Crude oil futures ended higher on Thursday, extending gains to a fourth session, on continued optimism that crude oil supplies will drop thanks to the oil cartel OPEC and its allies’s commitment to reduce output to stabilize the oil market.
West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for March ended higher by $0.54 or about 1% at $56.23 a barrel, recovering well after drifting down to $55.30 around late morning.
Brent crude futures were up $0.12 or 0.2% at $58.81 a barrel a little while ago.
The OPEC and allies, known as OPEC+, extended its current oil output policy at a meeting on Wednesday. Amid uncertain prospects for the global economy, there wasn’t any recommendation about changing the production levels of the alliance.
Ministers led by Saudi Arabia and Russia struck a note of cautious optimism about global oil markets and “stressed the importance of accelerating market re-balancing without delay.”
The oil market continued to benefit from data showing a drop in crude inventories last week. The Energy Information Administration’s report on Wednesday showed U.S. crude inventories dropped by 994.000 barrels last week to 475.7 million barrels, their lowest since March.
Gasoline inventories were up by 4.466 million barrels, more than 4 times the expected increase, while distillate stockpiles fell 9,000 barrels in the week, more than twice the expected drop.
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