1 - After spending only three days under $100 a barrel, oil prices shot back up on Thursday morning, erasing most of $10-a-barrel decline in just two days.
2 - Crude oil futures traded above $100 shortly after the open, before falling back slightly to $99.75. The rise follows a large jump on Wednesday when oil gained 6.6 percent as panicky investors fled the stock market to seek shelter in the perceived safety of commodities.
3 - After six months in the triple-digits, oil prices had slumped earlier in the week because of concerns that the financial turmoil on Wall Street would slow economic growth and hurt oil demand. Prices, which had fallen to $91.51 a barrel on Tuesday, have since made up their losses.
4 - Also, five days after Hurricane Ike
came ashore, the extent of the damage to the nation’s energy hub along the Gulf Coast remains unclear. The Gulf of Mexico’s entire oil and natural gas production remains shut while a dozen refineries across Texas and Louisiana are trying to resume production. It could take weeks before the situation returns to normal.
5 - The energy secretary, Samuel W. Bodman III, said Wednesday that the government was considering appealing to the International Energy Agency to release emergency fuel supplies to make up for the short-term disruptions.
6 - The energy agency, whose role is to coordinate energy policies for 27 industrialized nations, last released emergency oil stocks in the wake of hurricanes
Katrina and Rita in 2005.
7 - The Energy Department on Wednesday said that crude oil inventories in the United States had fallen to their lowest level since May. Gasoline stockpiles are at their lowest since 1969.
8 - The price of oil also rose as the dollar weakened. Over the last year, investors have used commodities, and oil, as a natural hedge against a falling dollar. The dollar slid as much as 2.6 percent to $1.4541 against the euro.