Oil Barely Changed After World Bank Forecast


The price of oil bounced around before finishing with a slight gain Wednesday. U.S. supplies declined more than expected, but a reduction in the World Bank’s estimate of global economic growth raised concerns about demand.

Benchmark U.S. oil for July delivery rose 5 cents to $104.40 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Brent crude gained 43 cents to $109.95 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London. The benchmark for international oils got a boost from tensions in Iraq.

The U.S. Energy Department reported that oil supplies fell by 2.6 million barrels in the week ended June 6. Analysts expected a decline of 1.2 million barrels, according to a survey of analysts by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.

The World Bank downgraded its forecast for the global economy this year, citing a bitter American winter and the political crisis in Ukraine. It now estimates growth of 2.8 percent, down from a previous estimate of 3.2 percent.

Geopolitical risks for energy markets were reinforced by al-Qaida-inspired militants overrunning much of the Iraqi city of Mosul on Tuesday. Mosul is in an area that is usually — though not presently — a major gateway for Iraqi oil.

In the U.S., the average price for a gallon of gasoline is $3.64, 2 cents lower than a week ago but still a penny higher than at this time last year.

In other energy futures trading on Nymex:

— Wholesale gasoline rose 3 cents to $3.00 a gallon.

— Natural gas slipped 2 cents to $4.51 per 1,000 cubic feet.

— Heating oil added 2 cents to $2.90 a gallon.