(AP) The price of oil extended losses below $100 a barrel Tuesday ahead of the U.S. employment report for September.
Benchmark U.S. crude for November delivery was down 33 cents at $98.89 a barrel at midafternoon Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract, which expires Tuesday, dropped $1.56 to $99.22 the day before. The December contract was down 34 cents at $99.34 a barrel.
A jump in U.S. crude supplies weighed on the oil price. The government said Monday, in a report delayed five days due to the government shutdown, that U.S. crude supplies rose by 4 million barrels in the week ended Oct. 11.
The Schork Report estimated that U.S. commercial crude oil stocks are at the third highest level for October since 1930 and 13 percent above the normal range over the previous decade.
The September employment report, also delayed because of the shutdown, is due for release later Tuesday and will provide a new cue for energy trading.
U.S. employers are forecast to have added 180,000 jobs, up from 169,000 in August. The unemployment rate is expected to remain at 7.3 percent, which will support arguments in favor of the Federal Reserve continuing its super easy monetary policy.
Brent crude, the international benchmark, was up 22 cents to $109.86 on the ICE futures exchange in London.
In other energy futures trading on Nymex:
Wholesale gasoline rose 0.4 cent to $2.644 a gallon.
Natural gas dropped 1 cent to $3.658 per 1,000 cubic feet.
Heating oil gained 0.6 cent to $3.013 a gallon.