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West Texas Intermediate was little changed near a 28-month low amid speculation that U.S. crude stockpiles increased last week. Brent oil was steady in London.
A government report tomorrow will probably show that crude supplies rose 3.8 million barrels last week, according to a Bloomberg survey of analysts. U.S. orders for durable goods dropped unexpectedly in September, a report showed today. Prices have slipped 11 percent this month on signs that global oil production is growing faster than demand for fuel.
"We're waiting for tomorrow's storage report," Bob Yawger, director of the futures division at Mizuho Securities USA Inc. in New York, said by phone. "The consensus is for a gain of 3-to-4 million barrels, but we were looking for a 3 million-barrel gain last week and got 7 million. If something similar happens this week, WTI will come under pressure."
WTI for December delivery rose 21 cents to $81.21 a barrel at 10:37 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures touched $79.44 yesterday, the lowest intraday level since June 29, 2012. The volume of all futures traded was 18 percent below the 100-day average for the time of day. Prices have declined 18 percent this year.
Brent for December settlement gained 7 cents to $85.90 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The volume of all futures traded was 35 percent lower than the 100-day average. The European benchmark crude traded at a $4.69 premium to WTI, down from $4.83 at yesterday's close.
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