Crude Up As Ike Heads For Houston

Crude oil rose from a five-month low as Hurricane Ike headed toward a near-direct hit on Houston, the busiest U.S. refining center.

About 16 percent of U.S. processing capacity is being shut before Ike makes landfall tomorrow. The Gulf Coast region is home to 26 percent of U.S. oil production. Evacuations have shut 97 percent of Gulf crude production and 93 percent of natural gas output.

At 8am London time Oct crude was 65c higher at $101.52/barrel.