) -- Crude futures bumped up a little higher today and many outlets are pointing to the weakening dollar as the main driver.

Light, sweet crude for delivery in September gained 36 cents to settle at $70.52 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange today.

Meanwhile, the

dollar was losing ground against a whole host of currencies today following yesterday's slightly more upbeat statement from the Federal Reserve. Investors were likely taking note, as the buck tends to move inversely with oil prices. In the afternoon, the greenback was slipping at 1.0888 Canadian dollars, 1.0701 Swiss francs, and 95.2850 Japanese yen.

Many stocks were holding on to gains following mixed retail and jobs data, though oil shares were mixed. The

NYSE Arca Oil Index

was up over 5.5 points, or 0.6%, in the afternoon.

Among the oil majors,

Marathon Oil

(MRO) - Get Report

was leading the way by gaining 88 cents, or 2.9%, at $31.46 near the close.


(COP) - Get Report



(BP) - Get Report

were putting on 0.6% and 0.7% each.

On the other hand,


(CVX) - Get Report



(HES) - Get Report


Exxon Mobil

(XOM) - Get Report

were sliding 0.4%, 1.4% and 0.5%, respectively, just before the closing bell.

-- Reported by Sung Moss in New York

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