Friday, May 27, 2011

Exxon (XOM) (BP) (COP) (MRO) Climb While Oil Futures Pull Back

Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP), BP (NYSE:BP) and Marathon Oil all closed up Thursday, even as oil futures pulled back after jumping over $101 a barrel on Wednesday.

Obama's economy continues to fall apart as first-time unemployment claims increased by about 10,000, far above the expected decline of 4,000 economists had been looking for. That is a seasonally adjusted 424,000 for the week ended May 21.

The growth rate of the U.S. economy was also worst than expected, growing at an anemic 1.8 percent rate in the first quarter, plunging from the 3.1 percent growth rate in the fourth quarter, and below the 2.2 percent economists projected.

The U.S. Labor Department also upwardly revised initial unemployment claims from the last report.

All of this affected oil prices, as oil futures closed lower Thursday. Light, sweet crude for July delivery settled down $1.09, or 1.1 percent, to $100.23 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude on the ICE futures exchange settled up 12 cents, or 0.1 percent, to $115.05 a barrel.

Front-month June reformulated gasoline blendstock, settled up 3.21 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $3.0483 a gallon. June heating oil was up 0.26 cent, or 0.1 percent, to $2.9829 a gallon.

With the Memorial Day weekend coming in the U.S., which usually involves heavy travel and usage of gasoline in vehicles, it probably offset the slightly lower price of oil and gas heading into the summer months.

Marathon closed Thursday at $53.58, gaining $0.82, or 1.55 percent. BP ended the day at $45.38, up $0.67, or 1.50 percent. Exxon Mobil closed at $82.39, climbing 0.43, or 0.52 percent. ConocoPhillips ended the session at $72.34, rising $0.37, or 0.51 percent.

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