Oil edges up as Iran uncertainty, Yemen turmoil support

Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:05pm EDT
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By Robert Gibbons

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Crude futures rose on Monday, but closed well below intraday peaks, as concerns about Iran and turmoil in Yemen supported prices, while the global supply glut continued to cap gains.

Also supportive to crude, U.S. diesel futures rose on news that Colonial Pipeline shut on Sunday its distillate pipeline running from Texas to North Carolina after a breach.

Brent May crude rose 6 cents to settle at $57.93 a barrel, having swung between $57.46 and $59.54.

U.S. crude rose 27 cents to settle at $51.91, well off its $53.10 peak just below its 100-day moving average at $53.18. It was last above that key technical level in July 2014.

Iran on Monday urged the formation of a new Yemeni government, comments likely to anger fellow OPEC member Saudi Arabia, which is backing Yemen's president against a rebel force allied with Iran.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry raised concerns with his Russian counterpart over Russia's decision to lift a ban on missile deliveries to Iran, the White House said on Monday.

Later, the State Department said U.S. officials do not think Russia's decision to deliver a missile system to Iran would affect the major powers' unity in ongoing nuclear talks.

Weak export data from China raised concerns about the economy of the world's No. 2 oil consumer but also fueled hopes for economic stimulus along with data that showed China's crude oil imports were up 14 percent in March versus a year ago, though imports fell from February.   Continued...

An offshore oil platform is seen in Huntington Beach, California September 28, 2014.  REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson