Oil prices surge to highest level so far this year
TORONTO – Crude climbed to its highest level so far this year as investors digested a surprising report on oil stockpiles in the U.S.
The June contract for benchmark North American oil surged $1.57 to US$46.23 a barrel as the U.S. reported crude stockpiles declined by 3.4 million barrels last week. Analysts had been expecting an increase.
The gain in oil helped lift energy companies on the S&P/TSX index, but the Toronto stock market ended the day little changed, up 13.02 points at 13,788.21.
Meanwhile, the oil-sensitive Canadian dollar was solidly ahead, rising 0.39 of a U.S. cent to 77.81 cents US.
Elsewhere in commodities, June gold rose $10.70 to US$1,275.50 a troy ounce while June natural gas was up two cents at US$2.17 per mmBtu. July copper added a penny to US$2.10 a pound.
In New York, retail stocks weighed on the markets as the Dow Jones industrial average plunged 217.23 points at 17,711.12. The broader S&P 500 composite index declined 19.93 points to 2,064.46 while the Nasdaq composite fell 49.19 points to 4,760.69.
© 2016 The Canadian Press