Market watch: Oil futures cool as products rally

International oil futures prices dipped Thursday as initial excitement cooled in the wake of the latest production cut by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. But momentum from the previous session continued a rally for refined products on the New York Mercantile Exchange.


By the OGJ Online Staff

HOUSTON, July 27 -- International oil futures prices dipped Thursday as initial excitement cooled in the wake of the latest production cut by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

But momentum from the previous session continued a rally for refined products on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The September contract for benchmark US light, sweet crudes lost 11¢ to 26.73/bbl on the NYMEX, while the October contract pulled back 9¢ to $26.33/bbl.

However, unleaded gasoline surged by 1.26¢ to 76.36¢/gal, and home heating oil for the same month gained 1.02¢ to 71.89¢/gal.

The August contract for natural gas dropped 14.8¢ to $3.13/Mcf. That contract's recent brief decline below $3/Mcf prior to Wednesday's rebound marked the first time in 15 months that a near-month natural gas contract had fallen below that level.

In London, North Sea Brent oil futures remained above the key $25/bbl level on the International Petroleum Exchange, although the September contract was down 11¢ to $25.14/bbl for the day. However, analysts said any bearish news could probably trigger a major sell-off in that market.

The natural gas contract for August lost 4.7¢ to the equivalent of $2.72/Mcf on the IPE.

The average price for OPEC's basket of seven crudes gained 13¢ to $23.91/bbl Thursday.

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