The Week in Commodities: Oil Climbs


This week has seen the FTSE 100 gradually edge upward, as some decent corporate earnings took the focus away from weak economic news and the eurozone crisis. However, some commodities have outperformed the stock market, with both oil and grains making strong gains thanks to supply-side pressures.

Oil prices reached their highest level since May this week, due to the ongoing conflict in Syria and poor U.S.-Iran relations. Meanwhile in the U.S., drought conditions in many agricultural areas are threatening corn yields and the U.S. Department of Agriculture now estimates that more than half the corn crop is likely to suffer “heavy or extreme loss of yield” this year. Corn prices have risen strongly over the last few weeks, and this week’s performance continued that trend.

Here are the latest prices, with the change since last week in brackets. Prices are taken Friday midmorning:

Brent Crude $107.15/barrel (+$7.64, +7.7%

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Cliff Taylor