Keystone Gulf portion nears start date, oil futures rise

|By:, SA News Editor

TransCanada (TRP -0.4%) says the southern leg of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline project is 95% complete, although it won't start carrying oil until after October.

The pipeline's progress is positive for West Texas crude prices because rumors had been going around that the project could be delayed; WTI rose as much as 1.8%, reversing an earlier decline, after the news broke.

The line is expected to speed the decrease of crude stockpiles at the Cushing, Okla., hub; supplies at Cushing fell to 32.8M barrels last week, the 13th straight weekly decline and lowest level since Feb. 2012, as new railroads and pipelines continue to reduce the surplus of oil in the region and transport it to refiners on the Gulf coast.

ETFs: OIL, USO, DBO, OLO, USL, CRUD, UCO, DTO, SCO, SZO, DNO, UWTI, DWTI.