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West Texas Intermediate oil advanced from the lowest level this year as equities climbed on company earnings and monetary stimulus, while a Brent pipeline system shut after a platform leak boosted the European benchmark.
WTI futures rose as much as 0.7 percent as the Dow Jones Industrial Average surged to a record amid the fastest profit growth since the 1990s. Brent gained as much as 0.9 percent as a pipeline system was closed for a fourth day after an oil leak was discovered March 2 on the Cormorant Alpha platform. An Energy Information Administration report tomorrow will probably show that U.S. crude supplies rose, a survey showed.
Production from the 27 North Sea oil fields that make up the Brent system remained shut and a series of safety checks must be completed before it can reopen, an official of the Abu Dhabi National Energy Co.PJSC, the operator, said today by phone from Aberdeen, Scotland. The official asked not to be identified because of company policy.
The system normally carries 90,000 barrels a day of crude and accounts for about 10 percent of the U.K.’s oil production. About 10,000 barrels a day were already offline after a similar incident at the same platform on Jan. 14.
WTI oil for April delivery rose 22 cents to $90.34 a barrel at 11:06 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The volume of all futures traded was 19 percent below the 100-day average. The contract fell 56 cents to $90.12 yesterday, the lowest settlement since Dec. 24.
Brent crude for April settlement increased 51 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $110.60 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The volume of all futures traded was 22 percent above the 100-day average. The European benchmark grade was at a $20.26 premium to WTI, widening for a fourth day.
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