MARKET WATCH: NYMEX oil price for May approaches $40/bbl

Light, sweet crude oil prices for May delivery climbed by more than $2/bbl on the New York market Apr. 8, settling at $39.72/bbl while Brent prices for June delivery rose about $2.50/bbl on the London market and settled at nearly $42/bbl.

US Federal Reserve officials made optimistic comments Apr. 7-8 about the economy and the likelihood of flat US interest rates. Analysts said those statements helped support oil prices.

Meanwhile on world oil markets, many traders and analysts are hopeful that major oil producers could finalize a deal to freeze production at January levels during a meeting scheduled in Qatar on Apr. 17.

The overall US drilling rig count lost 7 units to 443 for the week ended Apr. 8, said weekly statistics from Baker Hughes Inc. (OGJ Online, Apr. 4, 2016)

Although the loss was the second-smallest of the year so far, the overall count continued a recent dive that has resulted in declines in 31 of the past 33 weeks. The current total is down 1,477 units since the overall drilling dive commenced following the week ended Dec. 5, 2014.

Energy prices

The May crude oil contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange gained $2.46 to $39.72/bbl on Apr. 8, and the June contract was up $2.50 to $40.99/bbl.

The NYMEX natural gas contract for May was down by a rounded 3¢ to $1.99/MMbtu. The Henry Hub price was up 5¢ to $1.98 on Apr. 8.  

Heating oil for May delivery rose 7¢ to a rounded $1.20/gal. The price for reformulated gasoline stock for oxygenates blending for May was up 8¢ to a rounded $1.46/gal.

The Brent crude contract for June on London’s ICE soared by $2.51 to $41.94/bbl. The July contract climbed $2.53 to $42.02/bbl. The gas oil contract was $354.75/tonne, up $31.25.

The average price for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ basket of 13 benchmark crudes on Apr. 8 was $36.01/bbl, jumping $1.30.

Contact Paula Dittrick at

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