West Texas Intermediate futures settled at their lowest in more than three months weighed down by fresh indications of growing supply while the global benchmark, Brent, traded higher on an outage in Britain.
Light sweet crude for August delivery slipped 50 cents or 1% to end at $50.59 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Based on the most active contracts, this is the lowest that the US benchmark has settled since April 9.
Oilfield services provider Genscape Ltd reported that stockpiles at Cushing, Okla., an important storage and delivery point of the benchmark Nymex contract, unexpectedly rose since last week according to traders and brokers.
According to the data, inventories at Cushing have grown by an unexpected 1 million barrels since Friday last week sparking concerns that the global glut would persist.
According to the US Energy Information Administration the week ending last Friday, oil stockpiles I the US fell by a higher than expected 4.3 million barrels but inventories at Cushing rose by about 438,000 barrels.
“Another build at Cushing would be bearish for U.S. crude, and the Buzzard outage and contract expiration are supporting Brent,” Phil Flynn, analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago, told Fox Business on Thursday.
Brent on the other hand ended higher spurred by a power outage at Britain’s biggest oilfield before the expiration of the August contract later in the day.
According to reports by Reuters, Britain’s Buzzard oilfield, which normally produces between 170,000 and 180,000 barrels a day went down early Thursday after power failure, traders reported.
Brent for August delivery, which expired as the front month contract at the end of the session, traded up 46 cents or 0.8% to end at $57.51 a barrel on the ICE Futures Exchange in London.
September Brent, the new front month contract, however, ended lower 20 cents or 0.35% at $56.92 after reversing earlier gains.
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