Oil Jumps as U.S. Picks a President

NEW YORK (AP) -- The price of oil jumped more than $2 a barrel Tuesday as investors, along with voters across the country, await the results of the U.S. presidential election.

Benchmark crude rose $2.20, or 2.5 percent, to $87.85 in early afternoon trading in New York.

If that gain holds, it would be the biggest one-day jump in a month. But it's still a far cry from the rise in oil the last time U.S. presidential ballots were cast. Crude gained more than 10 percent on Nov. 4, 2008, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) rallied 305 points.

Traders are still assessing the full impact of Superstorm Sandy on gasoline supplies and fuel demand in the Northeast. They're also keeping an eye on a critical vote in Greece this week on a new austerity package that will impose further wage and benefit cuts.

Brent crude, which is used to price international varieties of oil, surged $2.41, or 2.2 percent, to $110.15 in London.

Meanwhile, most drivers are continuing to get a break at the pump. The national average for gasoline fell nearly a penny to $3.46 a gallon. The price of gas has fallen 4 percent in a week and 9 percent since last month.

Other futures also rose in New York trading:

  • Wholesale gasoline rose 6 cents to $2.69 a gallon.
  • Heating oil rose 5 cents to $3.03 a gallon.
  • Natural gas rose 2 cents $3.70 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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