Oil futures ended sharply higher Wednesday, boosted by a smaller-than-expected weekly climb in U.S. crude stockpiles.
Plans for a meeting of major oil producers next month to discuss limiting output and a dovish Federal Reserve statement, which pressured the U.S. dollar, added to gains for crude futures.
April West Texas Intermediate crude rose $2.12, or 5.8%, to end at $38.46 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. May Brent crude climbed by $1.59, or 4.1%, to finish at $40.33 a barrel on London’s ICE Futures exchange.
The Federal Reserve projected it would deliver just two rate increases in 2016 versus an earlier forecast for four hikes. The surprisingly dovish tone sank the U.S. dollar, lifting oil and other commodities priced in the currency. A weaker greenback can make assets priced in dollars more attractive to buyers using other currencies.