Oil Rises on Softer Dollar, Shipping Attack

Oil Rises on Softer Dollar, Shipping Attack
A PetroChina worker inspects a pump jack at an oil field in Tacheng, Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, China, on June 27, 2018. (Stringer AT/Reuters)

LONDON—Oil prices rose for a second day on Thursday, buoyed by a softer dollar and another attack on shipping near Yemen.

Brent crude futures rose 35 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $83.38 a barrel at 1036 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures climbed 37 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $78.28 a barrel.

The dollar index slipped 0.3 percent to 103.66, supporting prices. A weaker dollar usually boosts oil prices, making it cheaper for buyers holding other currencies.

Two missiles were fired at a vessel off the southeast coast of Yemen on Thursday, causing a fire onboard, British maritime agencies said, as Houthis keep up attacks on shipping to show support for the Palestinians in the Gaza war.

“.... [Hostilities] in and around the Red Sea by Iran-backed Houthi rebels on commercial ships are guaranteed to continue keeping the geopolitical risk premium at an elevated level,” PVM Oil’s Tamas Varga said.

Analysts expect U.S. refinery run rates to have risen to 81.5 percent last week from 80.6 percent of total capacity in the previous week, according to a Reuters poll.

Investors await official inventory data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) due at 1600 GMT on Thursday, having been delayed by one day due to a U.S. holiday.