Oil Extends Gains

Oil extended gains on Wednesday after posting its strongest daily rise in weeks in the previous session, supported by bets that U.S. crude stockpiles will fall for a second straight week as production slows.  U.S. crude futures neared 2015 highs after industry data showed a larger than expected drawdown in crude and oil products stockpiles last week. Months of low prices have spurred U.S. shale production cuts and lifted global oil demand.

“Lower oil prices are already showing signs of demand stimulation, especially in transportation fuels,” Morgan Stanley analysts said in a note.  The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries raised its 2015 forecast of global oil demand to 1.18 million barrels per day (bpd), above a previous estimate of 1.17 million.

June Brent crude rose 32 cents to $67.18 a barrel by 0209 GMT. U.S. crude was up 50 cents to $61.25 a barrel.  U.S. crude rose 2.5 percent and Brent 3 percent on Tuesday, underpinned by a weaker dollar and geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.