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Oil rises to near $87 in Asia amid hopes Obama speech to give new catalyst for economic growth
SINGAPORE (AP) ' Oil prices rose to near $87 a barrel Wednesday in Asia amid hopes that President Barack Obama's major policy speech later this week will provide a catalyst for stronger U.S. economic growth.
Benchmark oil for October delivery was up 94 cents to $86.96 at late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Crude fell 43 cents to settle at $86.02 on Tuesday.
In London, Brent crude for October delivery was up 10 cents at $112.99 on the ICE Futures exchange.
Crude has traded between $80 and $90 for the last month ' down from near $115 in May ' as investors worry a sluggish U.S. economy and high unemployment rate will stymie consumer demand. Obama is scheduled Thursday to announce new government measures to create jobs and spur economic growth.
Europe's debt crisis has also weighed on oil prices and equities this week but stock markets in Asia and Europe rebounded Wednesday.
"Investors have clearly become more concerned that the global economy may be sliding back to recession," Citigroup said in a report. "We don't believe this will turn into a rerun of 2007-2008."
In other Nymex trading for October contracts, heating oil added 1.6 cents to $3.03 per gallon and gasoline futures gained 1.3 cents to $2.84 per gallon. Natural gas for October delivery slid 1.8 cents to $3.92 per 1,000 cubic feet.