Seasonal demand patterns and the recent decision by OPEC and its allied producers to keep output cuts in place will likely lead to steadily higher crude and refined product futures in July and August.

And crude and gasoline futures on Monday appeared to be following that path, with modest midday gains.

West Texas Intermediate crude has attracted some speculative money of late, in contrast with the Brent benchmark where managed money length is about as light as it has ever been. The reasons behind speculators' preference for WTI weren't clear, but the NYMEX July WTI contract was up by 74cts to $79.19/bbl just ahead of midday.

Brent was lagging WTI's gains with the August contract 58cts higher at $83.20/bbl. A number of market watchers said they expect the price to rise to between $86 and $88/bbl, with higher values possible depending on the severity of the Atlantic Hurricane season.

Diesel was taking a bit of a breather Monday morning after posting strong gains through the first half of June. The NYMEX July ULSD contract was off by 0.18ct to $2.4688/gal.

About four days have passed since Ukraine launched drone attacks on Russian refining infrastructure and that could explain some of the price dip.

Gasoline futures and spot price were both higher in morning trading. The NYMEX July RBOB contract was up by 2.19cts to $2.4215/gal near midday. U.S. cash gasoline prices have also risen, except for the Great Lakes region, where prices were off by about 2cts/gal.

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 Tom Kloza,; Editing by Jeff Barber,

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

06-17-24 1235ET