Energy markets tame, crude oil and natural gas both down slightly

Energy markets were relatively tame Wednesday, with both oil and natural gas showing small declines.

Benchmark west Texas Intermediate crude for April delivery slipped 19 cents to close at US$102.40 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Natural gas futures fell three cents to US$4.51 per 1,000 cubic feet as weather forecasts indicate households won’t have to raise the thermostats so much in the second half of March.

Brent crude, which is used to set prices for international varieties of crude, was down 67 cents at US$108.85 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

In other energy futures trading on Nymex, wholesale gasoline lost four cents at US$2.76 a U.S. gallon (3.79 litres) and heating oil shed four cents to US$3.09 a gallon.