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Thursday 12th of February 2009
November 6, 2006

Oil prices climb on new Nigerian trouble


by Elaine Frei

Crude oil prices were higher on Monday on a combination of factors that included comments from the Saudi Arabian oil minister and new violence in Nigeria.

According to sources in the Nigerian government, an oil production facility at Tebidaba, in the southern part of the country, was attacked early on Monday. The region supplies oil to a tanker terminal that handles around 200,000 barrels of crude per day. Meanwhile, the oil minister of Saudi Arabia said that the Organization of Oil Exporting Countries is prepared to cut production further if the market is still oversupplied when the cartel meets in Nigeria in December.

Brent crude for December delivery was 88 cents higher to $60.02 per barrel at early evening in London, while December contracts for West Texas Intermediate crude added $1.02 to $60.16 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

In the metals markets, gold was trading at $625.50/$626.60 per troy ounce, down $2, by mid-morning in New York after hitting $629.40 per ounce earlier in the day. Platinum was $10 lower to $1,188/$1,194 per troy ounce. Among base metals, zinc added $35 to $4,425 per tonne late in the session in London after going up to a new record of $4,430 per tonne earlier in the day. Lead, which is over 70 per cent higher since late June, traded at $1,707 per tonne late after going as high as $1,738 per tonne earlier. Copper, however, was $30 lower to $7,330 per tonne.

Trade was disrupted for a time on the London Metals Exchange when its electronic trading system stopped working on the first day of use of new software. Traders had to conduct business through voice brokers and floor traders. The LME said that the software, which failed due to an “unforeseen issue”, would be ready for Tuesday’s session.

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