ECONOMY


Crude Oil Rises For the First Time in Three Days Before U.S. Supply Report

Baku, April 13 (AZƏRTAC). Oil rose for the first time in three days before an Energy Department report forecast to show that gasoline supplies declined for an eighth week in the U.S., the world`s largest crude consumer.

Gasoline stockpiles probably declined 1 million barrels from 216.7 million barrels in the longest stretch of declines since the summer of 2008, according to a Bloomberg survey of analysts before today`s data. Oil dropped as much as 0.6 percent in London earlier as Libyan rebels said they would accept a Turkey peace proposal if it includes an agreement for leader Muammar Qaddafi to relinquish power.

Brent oil for May settlement climbed as much as $1.27 to $122.19 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange, trading for $121.69 as of 12:57 p.m. Yesterday, the contract declined $3.06, or 2.5 percent, to settle at $120.92, the lowest since April 1.

Crude oil for May delivery gained as much as 0.7 percent to $106.97 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, and was at $106.69 a barrel at 12:58 p.m. London time. Yesterday, the contract fell $3.67 to $106.25, the lowest close since March 30.

Brent, the European benchmark, traded at a premium of $15.01 a barrel to U.S. futures today, compared with $14.67 yesterday. The difference between front-month contracts in London and New York surged to a record $19.54 on Feb. 21 as unrest spread in the Middle East and North Africa and stockpiles climbed at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery point for New York futures. The spread averaged 76 cents last year.

Today`s Energy Department report, to be published at 10:30 a.m. in Washington, may show crude supplies increased 1 million barrels, according to 16 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News.

New York futures plunged 3.3 percent yesterday after the International Energy Agency reported signs of an oil-demand slowdown and as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. forecast a “substantial” correction.

The U.S., the world`s largest economy, will expand 2.8 percent this year, down from 2.9 percent last year and a 3 percent growth rate for 2011 forecast in January, the IMF said April 11. It cut Japan`s 2011 growth forecast to 1.4 percent from 1.6 percent in a January forecast.

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