Oil prices rise amid fears of US hurricanes
Oil prices ticked higher as investors feared a shortage in the wake of Donald Trump’s sanctions on Iran and expected hurricanes in the US.
A barrel of Brent Crude was trading at $78.7, marking an increase of 1.8%. Meanwhile, West Texas Intermediate climbed 1.8% to $68.7 per barrel.
In currency markets, positive UK employment data and the extension of Mark Carney’s term as Bank of England governor both failed to lift sterling, which ended the day 0.1% lower against the dollar at 1.300.
Versus the euro, the pound was down 0.1% at 1.122.
Top-flight stocks in London were a shade lower, recovering from an earlier slump when it emerged that China will seek permission from the World Trade Organisation to impose sanctions on the US next week.
The FTSE 100 index clocked in at 7,273.54, down 5.76 points, or 0.08%, despite the weaker pound.
Ashtead Group was the leader of the blue-chip risers.
Shares closed 118p higher at 2,398p.
The equipment rental firm reported a 23% jump in pre-tax profits to £274.4 million for the company’s first quarter.
Trailing the index were tobacco companies British American Tobacco and Imperial Brands, down 2.71% and 3.34% respectively.
Oil prices rose on the back of Iran sanctions and fears of hurricanes.