WASHINGTON (Alliance News) - US crude oil ended slightly higher on Wednesday, after a weekly report from the Energy Information Administration showed crude oil stockpiles in the US to have declined more than expected. Nonetheless, the gains were limited on a jump in gasoline inventories and the World Bank projecting global economic growth to be weaker than previously estimated, with global equity markets trending lower.
Earlier today, a report from the US Energy Information Administration showed US crude oil inventories to have declined 2.6 million barrels in the week ended June 6, with analysts anticipating a drop of 1.2 million barrels. The EIA report showed US crude oil inventories at 386.9 million barrels, end last week.
Gasoline stocks rose by 1.7 million barrels last week, while analysts anticipated a drop of 0.5 million barrels. Inventories of distillate, including heating fuel, rose 0.9 million barrels, with analysts looking for an increase of 0.75 million barrels.
Late Tuesday, an American Petroleum Institute report showed US crude oil inventories to have risen by 1.5 million barrels in the week ended June 6, against expectations for a significant decline.
Meanwhile, Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries at its meeting in Vienna kept the group's production target unchanged at 90 million barrels a day as expected.
Crude oil's gains were limited after the World Bank in its latest World Economic Prospects report indicated 2014 global economic growth likely to be weaker than expected, with the poor weather in the US, financial market turbulence and the Ukrainian crisis serving as drags.
Light Sweet Crude Oil futures for July delivery, the most actively traded contract, edged up USD0.05 to close at USD104.40 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange Wednesday.
Crude prices for July delivery scaled a high of USD104.81 a barrel intraday and a low of USD104.17.
On Tuesday, crude oil futures ended marginally lower on cue from declining US equity markets and ahead of the official weekly oil report and OPEC meet in Vienna. Nonetheless, oil touched a yearly high of USD105.06 a barrel intraday Tuesday.
The dollar index, which tracks the US unit against six major currencies, traded at 80.77 on Wednesday, down from its previous close of 80.81 late Tuesday in North American trade. The dollar scaled a high of 80.90 intraday and a low of 80.67.
The euro traded lower against the dollar at USD1.3530 on Wednesday, as compared to its previous close of USD1.3547 late Tuesday in North American trade. The euro scaled a high of USD1.3557 intraday and a low of USD1.3522.
The World Bank today cut its global economic growth forecast to 2.8%, significantly lower than the earlier estimate of 3.2%, citing slower than expected growth in the US, China and Russia. However, the bank left its forecast for 2015 and 2016 broadly unchanged at 3.4% and 3.5%, respectively.
In Europe, unemployment in the UK decreased more than expected in the three months to April, falling to 6.6%, from 7.2% in the November - January period.
Meanwhile, unemployment rate across the member nations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development dropped to 7.4% in April from 7.5% in March. Around 45 million persons were unemployed in April, 4.9 million less than the peak in April 2010, but still 10.3 million more than in July 2008, the OECD said Wednesday.