Commodity Corner: Oil Declines on bin Laden News

News that Osama bin Laden was killed in a U.S. covert operation in Pakistan contributed to a temporary dip in oil futures Monday, with oil bottoming out at $110.82 a barrel.

June crude oil would ultimately settle at $113.52, though. Despite reports that bin Laden's remains are now somewhere in the ocean as well as assurances by President Obama that the world is "safer" without the 9/11 mastermind, Al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations remain a serious threat to the world's oil supply. This latter realization, along with unconfirmed reports by Iranian state media that Israeli military jets were preparing airstrikes against Iran, caused the oil price to regain territory lost earlier in the day.

Crude oil peaked at $114.83 Monday.

Natural gas for June delivery ended the day lower, settling at $4.69 per thousand cubic feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center recently forecast below-normal temperatures for May throughout the northern tier of the Lower 48 states. This outlook has been bullish for natural gas given the boost in heating demand that could occur should it come to fruition.

Front-month natural gas traded within a range from $4.64 to $4.73 Monday. June gasoline slipped to $3.35 a gallon after fluctuating from $3.31 to $3.42.

Matthew V. Veazey has written about the oil and gas industry since 2000. Email Matthew at mveazey@rigzone.com

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Brent Crude Oil : $52.72/BBL 3.31%
Light Crude Oil : $48.51/BBL 3.01%
Natural Gas : $2.89/MMBtu 1.36%
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