Singapore, — Crude oil prices jumped to a new high of
US$60.47 in Asian trading Monday amid concerns that supplies would not meet demand, especially in the United States, the world”s largest energy consumer.
After settling at US$59.84 a barrel Friday, the front-month August contract crude smashed through the psychologically important US$60 barrier in heavy Asian trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, a jump of 63 cents from Friday”s close. In mid-afternoon trading, it was at US$60.37.
Other petroleum products followed crude”s rise. Despite a traditional seasonal lull, heating oil was up nearly more than 2 cents to US$1.6725 a gallon while gasoline surged to US$1.6715 a gallon.
On London”s International Petroleum Exchange, August Brent
was up 44 cents to US$58.80 a barrel.
Nymex crude had briefly touched the US$60 mark on several occasions last week before Friday”s settlement price, the highest since futures began trading on the exchange in 1983, according to a report of the Associated Press.