Oil Rises After Surprise Drawdown in US Stocks

Oil prices rose on Wednesday, with U.S. crude topping $60 a barrel for the first time in about four months, after government data showed the American stockpiles of crude oil and refined fuels plunged last week.

WTI has rallied 32 percent this year after losing nearly half of its value in the final months of 2018. Brent is also up more than 27 percent year to date, boosted by production cuts from OPEC and U.S. sanctions against Iran and Venezuela.

West Texas Intermediate graph

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose 73 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $59.76.03 per barrel, after topping $60 and hitting its highest level since Nov. 12. The more heavily traded WTI contract for May delivery peaked at $60.20 a barrel.

Brent crude futures were up 41 cents at $68.02 a barrel around 1:35 p.m. ET (1735 GMT). The international benchmark for oil prices rose as high as $68.53, setting a new high going back to Nov. 13.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza