Oil Market Update (October 3, 2012)

Crude oil luctuated on industry forecasts that US inventories rose last week and optimism that Europe is closer to containing its debt crisis.

Prices were volatile as the euro advanced against the dollar on the back of speculation that Spain is likely to seek a bailout that may trigger the European Central Bank to purchase its debt.

Crude for November delivery rose 10 cents to $92.58 in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Tuesday. Brent oil for October fell 11 cents to $112.08 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange, according to Bloomberg data.

“The euro is getting a little bit better on expectations that Spain will seek a bailout and the ECB will come in to buy the bonds, and that’s helping oil,” said Addison Armstrong, director of market research at Tradition Energy. “There is no concern about supplies in the US.”

The price of oil remains supported by a report showing a rebound in US manufacturing for the first time since June.

Some analysts have also stated that the rally in oil prices following the Federal Reserve’s announcement of a third round of bond buying in mid-September has started to wane.

Analysts at Capital Economics said in a commentary that the focus would likely “return to the deterioration in underlying economic and financial conditions that made the additional stimulus necessary in the first place.”

Crude futures lost 4.4 percent last month but gained 8.5 percent in the third quarter, the highest three-month return since the fourth quarter of 2011.