Light sweet crude oil for November delivery edged upward to $82.98 a barrel Friday.
The WTI's 39-cent day-on-day increase followed the release of positive employment data for the month of September. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the country's total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 103,000 last month. Putting this figure in perspective, however, Bloomberg pointed out that nearly one-half of the increase for September stems from 45,000 striking Verizon employees returning to work.
Tempering the effect of the employment news on the WTI were Fitch Ratings' announcements that it was downgrading the sovereign credit ratings of both Italy and Spain.
The Brent futures contract posted a slight gain Friday, settling at $105.88 a barrel. It peaked at $106.55 and bottomed out at $104.41.
November natural gas fell more than three percent to $3.475 per thousand cubic feet before inching upward to end the day at $3.48. The intraday high for gas was $3.60.
Front-month reformulated gasoline (RBOB) lost one percent Friday, settling at $2.65 a gallon. The November contract traded within a range from $2.61 to $2.69.
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