Oil trails market while metals remain mixed

OIL continues to take its lead from the S&P index with US prices up 29c to $US83.67 per barrel as Wall Street rebounded on strong corporate earnings.

A drop in new US jobless claims and increasing sales of existing homes also served to push prices up.

Meanwhile, the US Energy Information Administration's weekly inventory report said crude oil inventories increased 1.9 million barrels last week.

"At 355.9 million barrels, US crude oil inventories are above the upper limit of the average range for this time of year," the EIA said.

Total gasoline inventories also rose, up 3.6MMbbl, while distillate fuels including heating oil and diesel increased 2.1MMbbl.

"Fundamentals remained weak and demand hasn't really picked up," Hudson Capital Energy trader Clarence Chu told AP.

Singapore's Tapis Crude slipped, down 51c from Wednesday night to close at $US87.14 on Thursday.

After closing at $1137.25 per ounce last Friday, spot gold tracked higher early, rising to $1146.50 per ounce on Wednesday.

The precious metal was last trading at $1138.95/oz.

Further worries about the Greek economy pushed most base metals on the London Metal Exchange lower overnight.

Similarly, LME copper rose early in the week to a weekly high of $7756 per tonne on Tuesday, but closed at $7655.25/t overnight.

Meanwhile, nickel was the only metal to post a gain, albeit a small one.

Nickel added 0.36% to $27,035/t, which is higher than last Friday's close of $26,645.


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