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Strong Housing Data Helps Extend Crude Oil Gains

Crude oil futures extended gains on Tuesday, jumping to a three-day high after stronger-than-expected U.S. housing data boosted future demand expectations from the world’s largest oil consumer.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in September traded at USD98.61 a barrel during U.S. morning trade, rallying 2.37%.         

It earlier rose as much as 2.6% to trade at USD98.75 a barrel, the highest price since July 14.

The U.S. Census Bureau said earlier that the number of building permits issued in June rose 2.5% to a seasonally adjusted 0.62 million, confounding expectations for a decline of 2.3% to 0.6 million.

U.S. housing starts surged 14.6% in June to hit a six-month high of 0.63 million, higher than expectations for a gain of 0.57 million.

The dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback against a basket of six other major currencies, was down 0.44% to trade at 75.36, the lowest since July 14.

Oil prices typically strengthen when the U.S. currency weakens as the dollar-priced commodity becomes cheaper for holders of other currencies.

Meanwhile, markets were awaiting fresh information on U.S. stockpiles of crude and refined products.

The American Petroleum Institute will release its inventories report later in the day, while Wednesday’s government report could show stockpiles declined by 1.5 million barrels last week, while gasoline stockpiles were projected to fall 0.1 million barrels.

U.S. oil supplies have declined in each of the past six weeks, falling nearly 5% since the end of May amid U.S. peak gasoline demand and the start of the Atlantic hurricane season.

Crude prices were also boosted after a report from China’s National Development and Reform Commission released earlier showed that Chinese fuel consumption rose 7.2% in the six months to June.

Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange, Brent oil futures for September delivery climbed 1.5% to trade at USD118.03 a barrel, up USD19.42 on its U.S. counterpart.

By. ForexPros.com

Forex Pros offers a diverse set of professional tools for Forex, Futures and CFDs. These include real-time data streams, technical and fundamental analysis by in-house experts, and a widely used economic calendar.

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  • Anonymous on July 20 2011 said:
    So, the oil industry stands to gain from more and more people buying houses? It has always seemed irrational to me that the same government people - Senators, members of the House of Representatives, and those working in various executive agencies - who are behind demands for 60 miles per gallon CAFE, are the same ones who take it as a given that everyone should have a house with 3 bedrooms, two and a half bathrooms, kitchen, dining room, i.e. everything we think the world owes us. So while squeezing the automobile harder and harder between fuel economy and crash safety, the powers-that-be are promoting a primary reason why we're so dependent on our cars: Our suburban way of life. And don't forget the financial meltdown we had in 2008, which was the end result of years of insisting on extending mortgages to those who statistically, are much more likely not to be able to keep up the payments.

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