While futures are down 0.6 percent in New York, prices are near the highest in more than three years and set for a fourth weekly advance. Brent is holding on to its gains after briefly passing $70 a barrel on Thursday. An eight-week drop in U.S. crude stockpiles has helped boost prices, while China on Friday said it imported a record amount last year, making it the world’s biggest buyer.
Oil has continued to rally this year after posting a second annual advance as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies curb supply to drain a worldwide glut. While the global market is balancing, there are still more than 100 million barrels that need to be cleared, according to United Arab Emirates Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei.
U.S. crude stockpiles dropped to 419.5 million barrels last week, the lowest level since August 2015, according to the Energy Information Administration. Oil output fell by 290,000 barrels a day, the most since October.
- China’s inbound oil shipments averaged about 8.43 million barrels a day in 2017, up about 10 percent from a year earlier, according to Bloomberg calculations using General Administration of Customs data.
Sources and photo-credits: Bloomberg