A good example of how commodity futures respond to economic data is February 8, 2013, when brent crude oil futures rose to their highest point in nine months and crude contracts trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) fell slightly, as markets responded to a rising value for the dollar and concerns about supply challenges at a key energy hub in the U.S.
MarketWatch reports that in London, Brent crude futures scheduled for March delivery settled at $118.90 per barrel, which was a 1.4 percent gain for the day. According to data provided by FactSet, this crude contract has not finished trading at a value higher than $118 since May. Earlier in trading, the contract appreciated to as much as $119.17.
March crude trading on the NYMEX finished the day at $95.72 a barrel, which represented a 0.1 percent drop for the day and the lowest settlement value since January 23, according to the news source.
The Associated Press reports that in addition to increases in these oil contracts, heating oil closed 4 cents higher per gallon at $3.24 and wholesale gasoline finished the day up 6 cents at $3.06 a gallon.
Tom Kloa, chief oil analyst for Oil Price Information Service, stated that after consumers in the northeastern U.S. fill their tanks before a coming blizzard, they will probably hold off on buying the form of energy for a few days, which should result in prices moving lower, according to the news source. As of February 8, gas was trading 27 cents per gallon higher than it was a month before.
One factor that as credited with impacting oil prices was a stronger dollar, MarketWatch reports. A low value for the euro relative to the greenback "forces the dollar higher against oil, so oil prices are under pressure," Richard Hastings, a macro strategist at Global Hunter Securities, told the news source.
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