Drop in Crude Stocks Causes Leap in Prices

Wednesday, May 5, 2021 Drop in Crude Stocks Causes Leap in Prices Petroleum prices rose nearly 1% on Wednesday, continuing upward momentum, after industry data estimated U.S. crude stockpiles fell much more than expected last week reinforcing bullish views on fuel demand in the world’s largest economy. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures leapt 72 cents, or 1.1%, to $66.42 a barrel, after climbing to $66.45, its highest since March 8. Brent crude futures jumped 80 cents, or 1.2%, to $69.66 barrel after touching a more than seven-week high of $69.64. Both benchmark contracts rose nearly 2% on Tuesday ahead of data from the American Petroleum Institute industry group. API figures showed crude stocks fell by 7.7 million barrels in the week ended April 30, according to two market sources. That was more than triple the drawdown expected by analysts. Traders are awaiting data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration later Wednesday morning on Wednesday to see if official data shows such a large drawdown. Oil price progress to nearly two-month highs has been supported by COVID-19 vaccine rollouts in the United States and Europe, paving the way for pandemic lockdowns to be lifted and air travel to pick up. So far that has more than offset a drop in fuel demand in India, which is battling a surge in infections.
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