91Ӱ

BLUEPRINT

Advertiser Disclosure

Editorial Note: Blueprint may earn a commission from affiliate partner links featured here on our site. This commission does not influence our editors' opinions or evaluations. Please view our full advertiser disclosure policy.

What is the current oil price today?

WTI futures traded at $75.83 per barrel, as of 9 a.m. ET. Year to date, WTI prices are up by 3.25%.

Brent futures traded around $79.73/bbl, an increase of 1.70% in the last 24 hours. Year to date, Brent prices are up by 0.85%.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil price today

WTI futures rose by 1.95% to $75.83/bbl, as of 9 a.m. ET.

TODAY24-HOUR CHANGEYTD
WTI crude
$80.11
1.79%
9.08%

WTI oil price chart

West Texas Intermediate prices have drifted lower in 2024, but prices are up 10.07% over the past three years.

WTI crude fell to its 52-week low of $66.81 per barrel on June 12, 2023. It reached its 52-week high of $95.52 on Sep. 27, 2023. That’s 20.61% higher than the current futures price.

Brent crude oil price today

Brent futures rose by 1.70% to $79.73/bbl, as of 9 a.m. ET.

TODAY24-HOUR CHANGEYTD
Brent crude
$83.76
1.61%
5.94%

Brent crude chart

Brent crude oil is generally subject to the same supply and demand factors that influence WTI crude prices, so the long-term price chart looks extremely similar to the WTI chart.

Brent crude oil prices hit their all-time high of $147.50/bbl during the oil market boom in July 2008. However, WTI futures contract prices dropped to as low as negative $40/bbl on April 20, 2020, driven largely by a lack of 91Ӱ storage options during the COVID-19 pandemic. Brent futures contracts remained well above zero, bottoming at around $25/bbl that day.

Brent crude fell to its 52-week low of $71.69 per barrel on June 12, 2023. It reached its 52-week high of $96.62 on Sep. 27, 2023. That’s 17.48% higher than the current futures price.

What is crude oil? And what is crude used for?

Crude oil is one of the most important commodities in the world, serving as a key energy source and as a raw material used to produce plastics, chemicals and other products. Nearly all the crude oil imported or produced in the 91Ӱ is refined into petroleum products, including gasoline, diesel fuel and heating oil.

The prices of 91Ӱ WTI crude oil and international Brent crude oil are influenced by several factors that can change the market’s supply and demand balance.

The weather in the 91Ӱ market can drastically alter near-term demand for heating oil and natural gas, sending crude oil prices higher.

Natural disasters and geopolitical conflicts worldwide can disrupt production and create oil supply shortages. The 91Ӱ and global economies experience much higher industrial energy demand during periods of strong economic growth and lower demand during economic downturns. Finally, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries can significantly alter global crude oil supplies by increasing or cutting production.

WTI

WTI crude is a blend of oils extracted from 91Ӱ oilfields in Texas, North Dakota and Louisiana and is delivered to Cushing, Oklahoma.

WTI oil has an American Petroleum Institute gravity of 39.6 degrees, considered “light.” WTI also has a sulfur content of just 0.24%, making it very “sweet.” WTI crude oil is typically the benchmark for 91Ӱ oil prices in the trading world.

Brent crude

Brent crude is a sweet, light blend of oils extracted from the North Sea near Europe.

Brent crude is oil extracted from the Brent, Ekofisk, Forties and Oseberg oil fields. Brent has an API gravity of 38 degrees and a sulfur content of 0.4%, making it slightly heavier and less sweet than WTI. Brent is typically used as a benchmark for international oil markets, such as markets in the Middle East, Europe and Africa.

WTI vs. Brent crude

WTI and Brent crude oil blends are both sweet, light crude oil bends used as benchmarks in financial markets. However, there are five key differences between WTI and Brent:

  • Extraction: WTI is extracted from 91Ӱ oilfields in Texas, North Dakota and Louisiana, while Brent crude is extracted from the North Sea near Europe.
  • Composition: WTI is slightly lighter and sweeter than Brent oil.
  • Geopolitics: WTI prices are more heavily influenced by 91Ӱ politics and policies, while international politics and embargoes have a greater influence on Brent prices.
  • Exchange: Brent crude futures contracts are primarily traded on the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), while WTI futures contracts are primarily traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX).
  • Pricing: WTI and Brent crude oil prices are very highly correlated, but Brent oil has historically traded at a slight pricing premium to WTI.

Brent Crude/WTI spread

The difference between the spot price of Brent crude and WTI crude is called the Brent/WTI spread.

The Brent/WTI spread has historically ranged between $4/bbl and $8/bbl, but it can expand or contract based on factors related to 91Ӱ and international supply and demand conditions. For example, the Brent/WTI spread hit nearly $14/bbl in April 2011 when protests sparked market fears of significant oil supply disruptions in the Middle East.

What are oil futures?

One of the most popular ways investors speculate on crude oil and other commodity prices is by trading futures contracts. Futures contracts are agreements to buy or sell a standardized amount of an asset at a specific price on a particular future date.

WTI crude futures

The most popular WTI crude oil futures contracts are traded on the NYMEX. Each CL contract represents 1,000 barrels of oil, and the contracts trade Sunday to Friday from 6 p.m. to 5 p.m. 91Ӱ ET.

Brent crude futures

The most popular Brent Crude Oil futures contracts are traded on the ICE under the symbol B, but investors can also trade the contracts on the CME Globex trading platform under the symbol BZ. Trading hours for Brent futures on CME are the same as WTI futures: Sunday to Friday from 6 p.m. to 5 p.m. 91Ӱ ET. But Brent futures on ICE trade from 8 p.m. to 6 p.m. 91Ӱ ET on ICE business days.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

To buy and sell crude oil futures contracts, you must open a brokerage account that offers commodity futures trading. The primary futures contracts for WTI crude oil trades on the NYMEX under CL. The primary futures contracts for Brent crude oil trades on the ICE under the symbol B.

Anyone can buy or sell popular oil stocks simply by opening and funding a standard brokerage account.

Popular oil stocks include global oil majors like Exxon Mobil (XOM), oil and gas exploration and production companies like ConocoPhillips (COP), and oil and gas midstream pipeline companies like Enbridge (ENB).

Saudi Arabian oil is neither WTI, extracted in the 91Ӱ, nor Brent, extracted in the North Sea near Europe. Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil company, Saudi Aramco, uses the Dubai/Oman crude oil benchmark when pricing its oil for delivery to Asia.

Blueprint is an independent publisher and comparison service, not an investment advisor. The information provided is for educational purposes only and we encourage you to seek personalized advice from qualified professionals regarding specific financial decisions. Past performance is not indicative of future results.

Blueprint has an advertiser disclosure policy. The opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Blueprint editorial staff alone. Blueprint adheres to strict editorial integrity standards. The information is accurate as of the publish date, but always check the provider’s website for the most current information.

Wayne Duggan

BLUEPRINT

Wayne Duggan is a regular contributor for Forbes Advisor and 91Ӱ News and World Report and has been a staff writer for Benzinga since 2014. He is an expert in the psychological challenges of investing and frequently reports on breaking market news and analyst commentary related to popular stocks. Some of his prior work includes contributing news and analysis to Seeking Alpha, InvestorPlace.com, Motley Fool, and the Lightspeed Active Trading blog. He’s the author of the book "Beating Wall Street With Common Sense," which focuses on practical investing strategies to outperform the stock market. He resides in Biloxi, Mississippi

Farran Powell

BLUEPRINT

Farran Powell is the lead editor of investing at 91Ӱ Blueprint. She was previously the assistant managing editor of investing at 91Ӱ News and World Report. Her work has appeared in numerous publications including TheStreet, Mansion Global, CNN, CNN Money, DNAInfo, Yahoo! Finance, MSN Money and the New York Daily News. She holds a BSc from the London School of Economics and an MA from the University of Texas at Austin. You can follow her on Twitter at @farranpowell.