Slumping oil prices damped demand for Russia™s ruble and increased the appeal of bonds. European stocks rebounded with Greek shares on prospects for a compromise between the country™s government and its creditors.
West Texas Intermediate crude slid 3.5 percent to $50.31 a barrel at 7:03 a.m. in New York. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index advanced 0.2 percent while Greece™s ASE index gained 1.3 percent and the nation™s bonds rose after the government submitted a request to extend the availability of bailout funds for six months. Standard & Poor™s 500 Index futures lost less than 0.1 percent. Treasuries gained with U.K. gilts and German bunds. The ruble fell for the first time in five days.
U.S. crude stockpiles probably rose for a sixth week to the highest in at least three decades, analysts in a Bloomberg survey said before an Energy Information Administration report. While oil has rebounded from a six-year low in January, some options traders are betting the gains won™t last.
Stocks and S&P 500 futures were little changed after gains this year boosted the value of global equities to a record $67 trillion, while lower oil prices spurred deflation in countries from France to Finland. Treasuries extended their advance from Wednesday, when Federal Reserve officials signaled an inclination to keep rates on hold œfor a longer time in minutes of their January meeting.