Investors have shown renewed interest in energy commodities and equities, causing a surge in crude oil and refined product futures. This trend is further supported by a weakening dollar after the Federal Reserve decided to keep interest rates unchanged.
Crude Oil Futures
The NYMEX December NYMEX West Texas Intermediate contract has witnessed an increase of $1.45, reaching $81.80/bbl as of 11:55 a.m. ET. Meanwhile, the January WTI contract also experienced a rise of $1.40, reaching $81.50/bbl.
London-based January ICE Brent crude recorded a similar boost, climbing by $1.50 to reach $86.10/bbl, with February Brent following closely at $85.60/bbl.
Refined Product Futures
After a recent three-day decline, gasoline futures have rebounded, indicating positive momentum. Diesel contracts, on the other hand, are on track for a third consecutive gain.
The NYMEX December RBOB contract is up by 5.60cts, hitting $2.2410/gal, while January RBOB is 5.15cts higher at $2.2355/gal.
Moreover, the NYMEX December ULSD shows an increase of 6.55cts at $3.027/gal, with January ULSD adding 5.85cts to reach $2.9495/gal.
Weakening Dollar Boosts Crude Futures
The dollar index saw a decline of 0.7% on Thursday after the U.S. central bank announced its decision to keep interest rates unchanged for the second consecutive month. A weaker dollar tends to make crude futures more attractive to investors holding non-U.S. currencies.
Similarly, the Bank of England declared its decision to maintain interest rates at a 15-year high of 5.25%.
PBF Energy Inc.'s Chief Executive Officer, Matt Lucey, provided an update on maintenance activities at the company's refineries. The Torrance refinery (166,200 b/d) and the Martinez refinery (157,000 b/d), both located in California, are expected to complete their maintenance work by the end of this month.
Reporting by Frank Tang; Editing by Jeff Barber