07/02/2014 09:37 AST

West Texas Intermediate crude traded near the highest price in a week as stronger-than-forecast economic data bolstered the outlook for fuel demand in the U.S., the world’s biggest oil user.

Futures were little changed in New York after rising 0.5 percent yesterday as U.S. unemployment benefit claims slid more than economists estimated. WTI is poised for a fourth weekly gain, the longest rally in seven months, as cold weather boosts consumption of distillate fuels. London-traded Brent crude climbed as Libya’s oil output fell after protesters tampered with a pipeline.

“The positioning for the U.S. economy and what the market is perceiving is providing support for oil,” said Jonathan Barratt, the chief executive officer of Barratt’s Bulletin in Sydney who predicts investors may sell WTI contracts at about $98.80 a barrel. “The draw in the products is typical for this time of the year where we see inventories start to decline. That should provide some underlying support to the market.”

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Bloomberg

Ticker Price Volume
QNBK 123.30 103,897
MMG 0.00 0
ARNB 24.06 13,626
SABIC 100.87 2,504,855
CHEMANOL 7.11 932,192
KCBK 12.00 1,889
BURUJ 34.50 110,831
(In US Dollar) Change Change(%)
Brent 55.48 0.00 0.00
WTI 49.48 -0.43 -0.86
OPEC Basket 53.81 0.03 0.06
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