The price of crude oil for November delivery surged Wednesday after the U.S. Department of Energy reported that the country's commercial crude oil stockpile fell by 400,000 barrels last week.
Wednesday's settlement price of $77.86 a barrel, a $1.68 gain from the previous session, stems from the Energy Information Administration's announcement that crude inventories slipped to 357.9 million barrels as of September 24. The latest figure remains well above historical averages for this time of year and nearly 6% higher than the corresponding period in 2009; however, traders are hopeful that the current glut will be steadily whittled down.
The November oil futures price peaked at $77.83 and bottomed out at $75.60.
The EIA also presented bullish news to traders: total U.S. gasoline stocks declined 1.5% last week to 222.6 million barrels. The price of a gallon of gasoline for October consequently went up by a nickel to settle at $2.00. The intraday range for gasoline was $1.93 to $2.00.
Approaching the $4.00 mark, natural gas rounded out Wednesday's gains. Gas for November delivery ended the first day of trading the new contract at $3.96 per thousand cubic feet. The front-month futures price fluctuated between $3.90 and $3.98. The now-expired October contract settled at $3.84 Tuesday.
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