Gasoline futures were holding onto gains of just over 1ct/gal ahead of midday Tuesday, while crude oil and distillate futures were modestly lower.

Petroleum futures have been searching for direction of late amid a lack of market-driving headlines, but the NYMEX August West Texas Intermediate contract rose to an overnight high of $81.90/bbl and the August Brent contract reached $86.23/bbl after a Ukrainian missile strike overnight on occupied Crimea prompted a warning from Russia, turning up geopolitical tensions a notch.

The gains, however, were short-lived with WTI moving back to $81/bbl level and Brent down to $85.50/bbl on weaker volumes. There were several sessions last week in which WTI volumes topped 1 million contracts, but the last couple of sessions have been lightly traded with total volumes at or below 700,000 contracts.

The August WTI contract at midday was off by 34cts to $81.29/bbl and August Brent was 44cts lower at $85.57/bbl. September Brent was down by a similar amount to $84.73/bbl.

NYMEX Refined products were mixed in midday trading with little difference between July RBOB and ULSD contract prices. The July RBOB contract was up just over 1ct to $2.5218/gal and the July ULSD contract was off 0.29ct to $2.5185/gal.

The more active August contracts are showing a more discernible difference with the carry in ULSD. The August contract was fractionally lower at $2.537/gal and the August RBOB contract was up more than 1ct to $2.506/gal.

In U.S. spot markets, diesel prices are generally above those for gasoline in East of the Rockies markets. On the West Coast, CARBOB is pricing 1ct to 7cts/gal above CARB diesel.

This content was created by Oil Price Information Service, which is operated by Dow Jones & Co. OPIS is run independently from Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal.

--Reporting by Denton Cinquegrana,; Editing by Jeff Barber,

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

06-25-24 1252ET