Brent crude oil took 10 years to climb from its record low to an all-time high, a level it has long since given up.
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A light, sweet crude oil that is traded on the Intercontinental Exchange and extracted from Europe’s North Sea, Brent is used to formulate the price for about two-thirds of the world’s oil supply.
Brent’s value is determined by Intercontinental Exchange traders based on supply and demand factors; it has traded at a premium to West Texas Intermediate crude since 2010, when increased WTI production in the midcontinential U.S. and Canada was unable to reach markets due “pipeline constraints,” according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Two years prior, in July, Brent crude prices touched their all-time high of $146.08 per barrel as emerging market demand began increasing at a time when production was stagnating. A weaker U.S. dollar and speculators were also blamed for the sharp price increase.
The hike to Brent’s peak capped off a rally that began almost 10 years earlier when the crude touched an all-time low of $9.63 in December 1998 amid a global supply glut.