Oil prices leapt higher on Thursday as concerns about tight supplies were stoked by news that saboteurs had blown up an Iraqi export pipeline, traders said. New York's main oil contract, light sweet crude for delivery in May, rose by $1,68 to close at $107,58 per barrel. In intraday trade it had hit $108,22.
World oil traded near $97 a barrel in Asia on Friday, its highest level in a month, following the assassination of Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto, dealers said. They said the rise in prices was also supported by a United States report showing a higher-than-expected drop in US crude stockpiles.