U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures rose to their highest levels in nearly a year on Friday with Brent traders zeroing in on the psychological $60 a barrel level on economic revival hopes led by strong compliance with the planned output cuts by OPEC+.
Also contributing to the gains were a government report that showed another draw in crude stockpiles, optimism over a speedier U.S. economic recovery on the prospect of additional stimulus from Washington and a successful rollout of the U.S. vaccination program.
OPEC+ Sticks with Oil Policy as Prices Rise Towards One-Year High
OPEC+ maintained its oil output policy at a meeting on Wednesday, a sign producers are happy that their deep supply cuts are draining inventories despite an uncertain outlook for a recovery in demand as the pandemic lingers.
A Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, known as OPEC+, is “optimistic for (a) year of recovery in 2021,” OPEC said in a statement after the panel met virtually.
US Crude Stockpiles Fall, Gasoline Inventories Surge: EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell while gasoline inventories jumped unexpectedly, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.
Crude inventories fell by 994,000 barrels in the week to January 29 to 475.7 million barrels, their lowest since March. Analysts in a Reuters poll had forecast a 446,000-barrel rise.