Crude Oil Rebounds

Crude oil rose from a 19-month low in New York as rising stock indexes allayed concern about waning energy demand.

Oil prices may rise next week, according to a Bloomberg News survey of analysts, as traders view the plunge in crude prices to below $60 a barrel as excessive. Equity markets in Europe and U.S. index futures recovered on speculation that interest rate cuts will reverse an economic slowdown.

Oil for December delivery climbed as much as $2.05, or 3.4 percent, to $62.82 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It was at $62.20 a barrel at 12:11 p.m. London time.

The contract earlier fell to $59.97 a barrel, the lowest since March 22, 2007, and is heading for an 8.5 percent decline this week.

Brent crude oil for December settlement rose as much as $2, or 3.5 percent, to $59.43 a barrel on London's ICE Futures Europe exchange. It was at $58.67 at 12 p.m. London time.

U.S. fuel demand during the past four weeks averaged 19.1 million barrels a day, down 6.7 percent from a year ago, the Energy Department reported Nov. 5. Gasoline consumption over the period was down 2.3 percent at 9 million barrels a day.

The International Monetary Fund projects the economies of the U.S., Japan and euro zone will shrink next year in a simultaneous decline in the world's biggest industrial powers, according to a fund staffer who cited revised forecasts.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, which supplies about 40 percent of the world's crude, is due to meet on Dec. 17. Most of its 13 members have announced that they will implement an Oct. 24 resolution to slash output by 1.5 million barrels a day.,
11/7/2008 5:04:28 AM