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crude oil rises for second day

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    Crude Oil Rises for Second Day on Threat of Supply Disruption

    July 1 (Bloomberg) -- Crude oil futures rose for a second day on concern that a terrorist attack or other event that could limit supplies may occur during the three-day Independence Day holiday weekend when U.S. markets are closed.

    Traders aren't taking short positions, which are bets on energy prices falling, before the holiday. Weekend attacks in Saudi Arabia and Iraq have caused prices to soar during the past two months. The New York Mercantile Exchange is closing early tomorrow and will remain shut on Monday.

    ``This is pre-holiday nonsense and we'll probably see prices move lower again next week,'' said Michael Fitzpatrick, a broker with Fimat USA Inc. in New York. ``Nobody wants to take a risk with the market being closed for a long period.''

    Crude oil for August delivery was up $1.15, or 3.1 percent, at $38.20 a barrel at 11:23 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices reached $38.34, the highest since June 23. Oil has declined 10 percent from a record $42.45 a barrel reached on June 2.

    In London, the August Brent crude oil futures contract was up $1.01, or 2.9 percent, at $35.51 a barrel on the International Petroleum Exchange.

    ``Just because $40 has historically been a very extreme price doesn't mean we can't stay around that level, or go higher,'' said Michael Lewis, head of commodities research for Deutsche Bank AG. Rising demand in China and India is supporting prices, and geopolitical risks to supply, such as the violence in Iraq and Saudi Arabia, is likely to persist, he said.
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