Brent and West Texas Intermediate headed for the biggest quarterly decline in more than two years as abundant crude supplies offset the risk of disruption from conflict in the Middle East.
Futures were up 0.4 percent in London, trimming a drop of 13 percent since the beginning of July. The U.S. and its European and Arab allies have conducted thousands of air missions since starting a bombing campaign to counter Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq, OPEC’s second-largest producer. U.S. crude stockpiles probably expanded by 1.5 million barrels last week, a Bloomberg News survey shows before an Energy Information Administration report tomorrow.
Brent for November settlement was at $97.63 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange, up 43 cents, at 10:44 a.m. London time. The contract climbed 20 cents to $97.20 yesterday. The volume of all futures traded was 15 percent above the 100-day average for the time of day. Prices have decreased 12 percent this year.
WTI for November delivery was 16 cents higher at $94.73 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices have lost 10 percent this quarter, the most since June 2012. The U.S. benchmark crude was at a discount of $2.86 to Brent on ICE, compared with $2.63 yesterday, which was the narrowest closing price since Aug. 9, 2013.