Oil Price Rises Above $71

15 December 2009 (Last Updated December 15th, 2009 18:30)

Crude oil prices in the US rose above $71 a barrel, with industry data depicting a sharp decline in US distillate stockpiles. For January delivery, crude prices increased by 60¢ to $71.29 a barrel at 9:33am GMT, while London Brent increased by 72¢ to $72.77 a barrel, according

Crude oil prices in the US rose above $71 a barrel, with industry data depicting a sharp decline in US distillate stockpiles.

For January delivery, crude prices increased by 60¢ to $71.29 a barrel at 9:33am GMT, while London Brent increased by 72¢ to $72.77 a barrel, according to Reuters.

According to an American Petroleum Institute (API) report, distillate stocks including diesel and heating oil fell by 2.6 million barrels last week.

Stocks of commercial crude oil increased last week by 924,000 barrels while refinery utilisation plunged below 80% of capacity, the API report said.