Oil Gains as U.S. Crude Inventories Seen Falling, Gold Nudges Up on Safe Haven Allure

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Oil is trending higher in early morning trade as global equities rise on renewed hopes for Europe as banks sought out less financing from the European Central Bank than expected. Traders will be eyeing the release of the latest weekly crude inventories data by the U.S. Department of Energy, with analysts expecting stockpiles to have decreased.

Gold too is gaining momentum as the dollar weakened against the euro, enticing investors to buy on dips as the yellow metal's allure as a safe haven persists.

At 0750 ET, Brent crude is up 0.7% at $75.93 a barrel, while light sweet crude is also 0.7% stronger at $76.50 a barrel, and natural gas is 1.3% weaker at $4.49 a million British thermal units.

Gold is up 0.2% at $1,244.60 an ounce, while silver is up 0.6% to $18.71 an ounce, and copper is up 1.2% at $2.95 a pound.

BP plc ( BP ) is up over 5% pre-market on the NYSE as the company plans to establish an emergency fund financed by the oil industry to help pay for costs concerning the Gulf of Mexico cleanup, according to the Financial Times. The company has also been the subject of takeover speculation.

As for BP's Russian joint venture TNK-BP (TNKBPI), it is looking to borrow up to $1 billion by the end of this year, said its CFO Jonathan Muir. It will not, however, look to issue eurobonds as a source, having already issued a $1 Meanwhile, the joint venture may be a buyer in BP's asset sales, particularly downstream assets in Europe, according to CEO Maxim Barsky.

OAO Gazprom ( GAZP ) said it owed $32 million to Minsk for gas transit through Belarus. The country's First Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Semashko said that Belarus expects to sign an amendment to its contract with Gazprom over gas transit prices on Thursday.

In the mining sector, Australia's Gryphon Ltd ( GRY ) is looking to take over Shield Mining Ltd ( SHX ) to create a West Africa-focused gold company. Gryphon is offering one of its own shares for every three Shield shares. Gryphon has a 1.1 million ounce project in Burkina Faso, while Shield focuses on mining for gold in Mauritania.

Meanwhile, South Africa will maintain its 26% black ownership target for mining companies as announced by Mines Minister Susan Shabangu in a speech. The 2004 Mining Charter requires companies to sell 26% of their South African assets to black investors by 2014 to make amends for apartheid.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: BP , GAZP , GRY , SHX

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