Crude Closes Above $70

Natural gas is also higher.
Publish date:

Oil futures pierced the $70-a-barrel level and stayed there Friday, remaining buoyant on increased geopolitical tensions from numerous global hotspots.

August crude jumped $1.11 to $70.68 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Reformulated gasoline rose 3 cents to $2.29 a gallon, while heating oil remained unchanged at $2.04 a gallon.

Natural gas rose 12 cents to $6.77 per million British thermal units.

Buyers came in after news of an unsuccessful bomb attempt in a crowded neighborhood in downtown London. The culprits of the attempt are not yet known, and a massive manhunt is currently under way there.

Energy markets were also shaken by a bizarre statement made Thursday by Russian scientists declaring that an enormous, oil-rich section of the Arctic Circle, including the North Pole, is part of Russian territory.

Russia's recent moves to renationalize many of its natural resources have been disconcerting to Western markets. This latest gesture adds fuel to the fire that some analysts are calling "Cold War II."

Meanwhile, energy stocks were broadly higher. The

CBOE Oil Index

advanced 1.5% to 763.80.


(COP) - Get Report

gained 1.7% to $77.96, and


(CVX) - Get Report

rose 0.7% to $84.74.

Exxon Mobil

(XOM) - Get Report

climbed 0.7% to $84.05.

Carrizo Oil & Gas

(CRZO) - Get Report

was downgraded by BMO Capital Markets to market perform from outperform, sending its stock 0.9% lower to $42.23.