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Oil prices rise

19 december 2011, 22:49
0
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. ©AFP
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. ©AFP
Crude oil climbed on Monday, helped by rising equities, although prices failed to take advantage of geopolitical tensions caused by the death of North Korea leader Kim Jong-Il and Kazakhstan unrest, AFP reports.

New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in January, rose 33 cents to $93.86 a barrel.

Brent North Sea crude for February delivery climbed 63 cents to $103.98 in midday London trade.

"Numerous geopolitical developments should really be shaping events on the oil market at the moment, yet the death of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il has left the oil price cold," said Commerzbank analyst Carsten Fritsch.

North Korea's Kim has died aged 69 of a heart attack, state media announced on Monday, plunging the nuclear-armed and deeply isolated nation into a second dynastic succession.

Pyongyang urged people to rally behind Kim's youngest son Jong-Un, describing him as "great successor" to the leader who presided over a famine that saw hundreds of thousands die, but still built an atomic arms arsenal.

"The oil price has yet to react to events in Kazakhstan, too, where oil production could be affected by the violent riots ... Producing over 1.6 million barrels per day -- exactly the same amount as Libya's pre-war production -- Kazakhstan is a major oil producer," added Fritsch.

Several thousand people protested in Kazakhstan on Monday against what they said was state-triggered violence which claimed at least 15 lives in the oil-rich Mangistau region.

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