Crude Pares Losses as Dollar Decline Spurs Commodity Purchases

Oil pared earlier losses to trade near a 26-month high as investors purchased commodities as a drop in the dollar spurred the buying of riskier assets.

Crude reversed an earlier 0.7 percent decline today as the Dollar Index, a measure of the greenback against six major currencies, slipped 0.2 percent. The extension of U.S. tax cuts for another two years bolstered Asian equities and boosted optimism for fuel demand. Copper prices also reached a record in London as investors sought alternative investments.

Crude for January delivery was at $89.46 a barrel, up 8 cents, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 4:09 p.m. Singapore time. The contract earlier fell as much as 58 cents to $88.80. Yesterday, prices rose to $89.38, the highest settlement since Oct. 7, 2008.

Brent crude for January settlement was at $91.46 a barrel, up 1 cent, on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The contract earlier lost as much as 54 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $90.91. Yesterday, it gained 3 cents to $91.45.

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