The price of oil rose above $104 a barrel Friday ahead of a holiday weekend in the U.S. and national elections in Ukraine on Sunday.
Benchmark U.S. crude for July delivery gained 61 cents to $104.35 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Oil ended the week with a gain of $2.33 a barrel, or 2.3 percent.
Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, added 18 cents to $110.54 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.
Ukrainians vote Sunday in an early presidential election that could be a crucial step toward resolving the country’s crisis, but clashes between pro-Russia separatists and government forces appeared to be heating up. Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country would respect the outcome of the election.
Holidays will keep markets closed on Monday in the U.S. and Britain.
U.S. drivers are paying an average of $3.66 for a gallon of gasoline, about what they were paying at this time last year. Californians are paying the highest price in the Lower 48, an average of $4.13 a gallon. Arkansas and Missouri are tied for the lowest average price at $3.40.
In other energy futures trading in New York.
– Wholesale gasoline rose 2 cents to $3.02 a gallon.
– Natural gas rose 5 cents to $4.41 per 1,000 cubic feet.
– Heating oil was flat at $2.95 a gallon.