Oil prices volatile, but end where they began
Benchmark U.S. oil gained 3 cents to settle at $92.12 a barrel.
By JOSHUA FREED
The Associated Press
The price of oil bounced around on Wednesday but finished almost where it began.
Benchmark U.S. oil gained 3 cents to settle at $92.12 a barrel. It rose as high as $92.85 in the morning after gains in European stocks. But then the price dipped after the U.S. government reported a bigger-than-expected increase in U.S. crude supplies.
Supplies rose by 2.9 million barrels last week. That was almost double what analysts had forecast, according to Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.
Gasoline supplies also rose. Analysts had predicted a decline.
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The extra gasoline and oil in storage tends to push prices down, because it suggests that there's enough to go around, or that demand is low.
Brent crude, which is used to price international varieties of oil, fell 78 cents to finish at $113.22 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.
In other energy futures trading on the Nymex:
— Heating oil fell almost a penny to $3.1894 per gallon.
— Natural gas gained 3.3 cents to $3.47 per 1,000 cubic feet.
— Wholesale gasoline fell 6.4 cents to $2.7817 per gallon.
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