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Oil soars after EU deal for Spain banks

29 June 2012, 10:02

 Singapore - Oil jumped above $79 a barrel on Friday in Asia, bouncing off an eight-month low after European leaders agreed to use the continent's bailout fund to funnel money directly to struggling Spanish banks.

Benchmark oil for August delivery was up $1.60 at $79.29 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell $2.52 to settle at $77.69, the lowest close since October, in New York on Thursday.

In London, Brent crude for August delivery was up $1.30 at $92.66 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.

Policymakers said at an EU summit early Friday that they would create a unified bank supervisory board and allow a rescue fund to recapitalise Spain's banks without boosting government debt.

Before the summit, analysts hadn't expected any significant policy announcements, so investors reacted with optimism on Friday that the EU may be taking steps toward solving its debt and economic woes.

Asian stock markets rose and the euro jumped to $1.2583 from $1.2429 late on Thursday in New York. Oil traders often look to stock markets as a barometer of overall investor sentiment. A weaker US dollar makes commodities traded in dollars such as crude less expensive for investors with other currencies.

Crude has plunged from $106 early last month amid expectations that weak global economic growth will reduce demand for oil.

In other energy trading, heating oil was up 3.2 cents at $2.58 per gallon and gasoline futures gained 2.0c at $2.50 per gallon.

Natural gas added 3.6c at $2.76 per 1 000 cubic feet.


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