10/25/2012 07:54 EDT | Updated 12/25/2012 05:12 EST

Crude oil prices rise slightly to US$86.05 a barrel, stop 5-day slide

NEW YORK, N.Y. - It wasn't a convincing move higher, but oil managed to rise Thursday for the first time in six days.

Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude gained 32 cents to finish at US$86.05 a barrel in New York. The price had dropped $6.37 a barrel, or seven per cent, over the previous five trading sessions.

Brent crude added 64 cents to end at US$108.49 a barrel in London.

The market may have been biding time ahead of Friday's report on gross domestic product. Analysts are estimating that the U.S. economy grew 1.8 per cent in the third quarter.

Any reading above that could spark a rise in oil to the US$87-$88 a barrel level, said Jim Ritterbusch of Ritterbusch and Associates.

In other energy futures trading in New York, natural gas prices fell 1.6 cents to finish at $3.434 per 1,000 cubic feet after the government said supplies of the fuel rose last week.

Wholesale gasoline rose 7.34 cents, or almost three per cent, to end at US$2.676 a U.S. gallon (3.79 litres). Gasoline futures had dropped about 12 per cent over a two-week period.

Heating oil rose 2.3 cents to finish at US$3.062 a gallon.