Heating Oil Prices Soar

From Associated Press

Heating oil prices soared Thursday on the New York Mercantile Exchange as concern about tight supplies led to heavy buying.

Supplies of heating oil in New York are believed to be tight, said Ed Dellamonte, a petroleum analyst in New York with Prudential-Bache Securities.

In addition, Dellamonte said, demand could continue strong because of winter-like weather in the Northeast.

A report Tuesday from the American Petroleum Institute indicated that nationwide inventories of heating oil fell by 6 million barrels last week, almost double what had been anticipated by market analysts.

Dellamonte said demand for heating oil also appeared to spur demand for crude oil to provide sufficient supplies.

Crude oil settled 25 cents to 49 cents higher with the contract for delivery in May at $28.34 a barrel; heating oil settled 1.7 cents to 3.07 cents higher with April at 81.76 cents a gallon.

Gold was lower and silver was higher on the Commodity Exchange in New York.

Grain and soybean futures prices were mostly higher on the Chicago Board of Trade.

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