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Oil up nearly 2 pct, following broad market rally
Oil around $87 per barrel as stocks rally and Japan reports better-than-expected GDP results
By The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) ' Oil jumped to the highest level in more than a week alongside a broad rally on Wall Street and a report that Japan's economy contracted less than expected last quarter.

Monday's 1.5 percent rise to near $87 per barrel all but erased losses from a roller coaster ride in oil markets last week. The benchmark price tumbled last Tuesday to its lowest level this year, though its current trading range of between $80 and $90 per barrel is still well above last year's average of $79.64 per barrel.

That means retail gasoline prices be higher than what motorists paid last year. The national average pump price fell less than a penny on Monday to $3.594 per gallon, according to AAA, Wright Express and Oil Price Information Service. A gallon of regular is 8 cents cheaper than it was a month ago, but it's still about 84 cents higher than it was last year.

Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for September delivery surged $1.44 to $86.82 per barrel in midday trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It climbed as high as $87.49 earlier in the day, the highest since Aug. 5.

Brent crude, which is used to price many international oil varieties, added 84 cents at $108.87 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

Oil rose after Japan said its economy shrank at an annualized rate of 1.3 percent in the April-June quarter ' about half of what analysts expected. Crude also gained as stock markets rose and the dollar weakened.

"Last week, we saw a market that was really driven by fear," Flynn said. "The data out of Japan shows that the world isn't falling off the map."

In other Nymex trading for September contracts, heating oil added about 3 cents at $2.9314 per gallon and gasoline futures gained 2 cents at $2.8464 per gallon. Natural gas lost 9 cents at $3.973 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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