Oil rises above $94; gasoline drops to $3.58
Meanwhile, the national average for gasoline dropped again, good news for motorists with summer driving season less than two months away.
By Tuesday afternoon in New York, benchmark oil for May delivery was up 98 cents to $94.34 a barrel. The contract rose 66 cents to finish at $93.36 a barrel Monday. That followed a decline of $4.53, or 4.7 percent, last week.
Oil moved higher late in the morning, as U.S. stocks rose and the dollar fell. The euro rose to $1.3089 against the dollar, compared with $1.3007 Monday. A weaker dollar makes crude less expensive and more attractive to traders using other currencies.
At the pump, the average price for a gallon of gasoline dropped a penny to $3.58. That is 35 cents cheaper than at this time last year, when the price was $3.93.
Oil investors are waiting for fresh information on U.S. stockpiles of crude and refined products.
Data for the week ending April 5 is expected to show an increase of 1.4 million barrels in crude oil stockpiles and a draw of 1.8 million barrels in gasoline stocks, according to a survey of analysts by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.
The American Petroleum Institute will release its report on oil stocks later Tuesday, while the report from the Energy Department's Energy Information Administration -- the market benchmark -- will be out on Wednesday.
Brent crude, which sets the price of oil used by many U.S. refineries to make gasoline, was up 86 cents to $105.63 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.
In other energy futures trading on the Nymex:
-- Wholesale gasoline rose 2 cents to $2.93 per gallon.
-- Natural gas fell 5 cents to $4.04 per 1,000 cubic feet.
-- Heating oil was flat at $2.95 per gallon.
Pamela Sampson in Bangkok and Pablo Gorondi in Budapest contributed to this report.
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