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Crude fluctuated after a U.S. Energy Department report showed that stockpiles dropped and as the dollar rose against the euro on the European Central Bank’s reduction of interest rates to a record low.
Supplies fell 4.27 million barrels to 382.9 million last week, the biggest decrease since December, the report showed. Inventories were forecast to decline 2.3 million barrels, according to a Bloomberg survey. Oil decreased as much as 1.3 percent earlier after ECB President Mario Draghi said economic risks remain after the bank cut rates and the dollar gained.
Crude for August delivery surged to $88.98 earlier, the highest level since May 30. Prices are down 11 percent this year.
Brent oil in London rose as Statoil ASA (STL), Norway’s largest crude producer, prepared to halt output. The Norwegian Oil Industry Association, which represents employers, will ban all members of three labor unions who are covered by offshore pay agreements from midnight on July 9, Statoil said.
The planned lockout of oil workers in Norway will halt the nation’s entire offshore production, which totals about 2 million barrels a day of oil equivalent, Bard Glad Pedersen, a spokesman for Statoil ASA, said by phone today from Oslo.
Brent oil for August settlement advanced $1.60, or 1.6 percent, to $101.37 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. It touched $102.34 during the session, the highest level since June 7.
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