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Crude Oil Busts Through $63, EIA Reports Inventories Dwindled

Crude oil futures continued to rise Wednesday, extending 4-year highs amid further signs the global oil market is tightening.

U.S. crude inventories fell 4.9 million barrels last week, more than the 3.9-million decline forecast. It was the eight week in a row that inventories dwindled.

Even with bigger-than-expected builds in gasoline and heating fuel stocks, crude oil kept its early gains.

February West Texas Intermediate rose 61 cents, or 1%, to settle at $63.57 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

In economic news today, the Labor Department said import prices inched up by 0.1 percent in December after climbing by an upwardly revised 0.8 percent in November.

Economists had expected import prices to rise by 0.5 percent compared to the 0.7 percent increase originally reported for the previous month.

The report also showed an unexpected decrease in export prices, which edged down by 0.1 percent in December after rising by 0.5 percent in November. Export prices had expected to rise by 0.3 percent.

A separate report from the Commerce Department showed wholesale inventories increased by slightly more than anticipated in the month of November.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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