The price of crude oil futures surged on Friday despite weak GDP figures that undermined investor confidence in the pace of economic recovery. The ICE West Texas Intermediate Light Sweet crude oil futures contract for September delivery rose 2.66 percent to $79.26 in London trading.
Stocks and stock index futures moved in a relatively tight band, but were greatly outpaced by the gains in commodities, particularly oil and copper futures. Copper futures rose 2.81 percent to $3.109 per pound.
According to the Wall Street Journal, some traders were nervous about possible storms in the Gulf region, with scientists forecasting a violent hurricane season. Storms will complicate drilling and extraction, and may have particularly damaging effects on BP’s efforts to contain and control the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
After a setback caused by an accident with one of the underwater robots, BP was able to remove and then put back into place the containment cap in on the failed blowout preventer. It continues to collect around 25,000 barrels of crude oil per day, but this is far less than the estimated 60,000 barrels flooding into the gulf each day.
Shares of BP tumbled to a 14-year low, trading at $27.33 per share on the NYSE.
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