KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 24): Share prices of Bursa Malaysia-listed oil and gas (O&G)-related firms including Petron Malaysia Refining & Marketing Bhd and Hengyuan Refining Company Bhd rose in morning trade today after global crude oil prices closed up more than 2% overnight as investors weighed the US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest data on lower crude oil inventories.
At 9.02am today, Petron had risen 20 sen to RM5.49, while Hengyuan climbed 17 sen to RM5.86.
It was reported that oil prices rose more than 2% overnight, boosted by draws in US inventories of crude, gasoline and distillates that lifted investors' hopes for some return in fuel demand.
It was reported that Brent crude futures rose US$1.12 (RM4.55), or 2.2%, to settle at US$51.20 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose US$1.1, or 2.3%, to settle at US$48.12 a barrel.
US crude inventories fell by 562,000 barrels in the week to Dec 18 to 499.5 million barrels, the EIA said yesterday.
Gasoline stocks fell by a surprise 1.1 million barrels in the week to 237.8 million barrels, while distillate stockpiles fell by 2.3 million barrels in the week to 148.9 million barrels, more than expected, Reuters reported the EIA as saying.
Andrew Lipow, the president of Lipow Oil Associates in Houston, was quoted as saying the O&G industry saw a modest recovery in distillate and gasoline demand that was indicative of the holiday season.
"Those demand figures, combined with gasoline and distillate inventory draws, helped to support the market this morning,” Lipow said.