Oil prices steadied on Friday, snapping a week-long decline as investors closed positions at the end of a volatile week that saw prices slide nearly 10 percent on renewed signs a global supply glut was here to stay.
Brent’s new front-month December contract LCOc1 was up 25 cents at $49.98 a barrel at 1125 GMT. November Brent expired at $48.71 a barrel on Thursday, down 44 cents day on day.
U.S. crude’s front-month November contract CLc1 traded 38 cents higher at $46.76 a barrel.
“Investors holding short positions have already started to take profit ahead of the weekend after four days of decline,” said Tamas Varga, oil analyst at London brokerage PVM Oil Associates.
Strong equities markets also supported gains as European shares extended a rally on Friday, buoyed by bullish Asian and U.S. trading on positive U.S. economic data.
Despite Friday’s gains, WTI was set to make its steepest weekly loss in 10 weeks and Brent in eight weeks, after the International Energy Agency predicted the market to remain oversupplied through 2016.