Exchange-traded funds tied to natural gas were on the rise Wednesday, as prices surged a day before the latest inventory report.
Recently, natural gas jumped 25 cents to $6.18 per million British thermal units. According to Bloomberg, natural gas inventories rose by 61 billion cubic feet last week. The data from the Energy Department is due at 10:30 a.m. EDT Thursday.
Crude oil-related ETFs were also on the rise following bullish inventory data. Earlier, crude oil topped $79 a barrel for the first time ever, after the Energy Department said that crude stocks dropped a greater-than-expected 7.1 million barrels last week. The front-month October contract was recently up 67 cents to $78.90.The Ultra Oil & Gas ProShares (DIG) was rising $2.12, or 2.1%, to $102.95. The PowerShares Dynamic Energy (PXI) was up 53 cents, or 1.6%, to $33.51. The SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production (XOP) ETF gained 84 cents, or 1.9%, to $45.62. Bundled securities tracking the biotech sector were also higher thanks to Amgen (AMGN). Earlier, UBS upgraded Amgen to neutral from sell after the Food and Drug Administration panel rejected a proposal that would limit the use of anemia drugs. The Biotech HOLDRs (BBH) was higher by $1.92, or 1.1%, at $174.18. The First Trust Amex Biotechnology Index (FBT) was adding 24 cents, or 1%, to $25.42. The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology (IBB) was up 73 cents, or 0.9%, to $82.43. On the other hand, ETFs tracking silver futures were among the worst performers of Wednesday's session, as silver lost 13 cents to $12.70 an ounce. Gold and copper were also trading weaker. The PowerShares DB Base Metals (DBB) was down 23 cents, or 0.9%, to $24.79. The iShares Silver Trust (SLV) slid $1.32, or 1%, to $125.08. The PowerShares DB Silver (DBS) was off 26 cents, or 1%, to $24.74.