Oil prices rise on stronger economic outlook and shrinking US reserves.


Oil prices rose on Wednesday on prospects for stronger global economic growth amid rising COVID-19 vaccines and a report that crude inventories in the United States, the world’s largest consumer of fuel, fell.

But optimism about the US-Iran talks and an impending surge in supply from major oil producers limited gains.

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June Brent crude futures rose 24 cents, or 0.4%, to $ 62.98 a barrel at 0403 GMT, while US West Intermediate crude for May was up 20 cents, or a 0.3%, at $ 59.53.

“Optimism about the global economic outlook boosted confidence in the crude oil market,” ANZ bank analysts wrote in a note on Wednesday.

Prices stayed afloat as data on Tuesday showed job openings in the United States surged to a two-year high in February, while hiring rebounded. This followed previous data showing an improvement in the service sectors in the US and China.

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The International Monetary Fund said Tuesday that unprecedented public spending to combat COVID-19 would boost global growth to 6% this year, a rate not seen since the 1970s.

Optimism about a broader vaccine rollout also boosted prices, as US President Joe Biden raised the COVID-19 vaccine eligibility target for all American adults through April 19.

Crude oil reserves in the United States fell more than expected in the week ending April 2, while fuel inventories rose, according to three market sources, who cited figures from the American Petroleum Institute (API) before the government data on Wednesday.

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Oil production in the U.S. is expected to fall by 270,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2021 to 11.04 million bpd, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Tuesday, a drop steeper than its previous monthly forecast of a 160,000 bpd drop.

Iran and world powers held what they described as “constructive” talks on Tuesday and agreed to form working groups to discuss possible revival of the 2015 nuclear deal that could lead Washington to lift sanctions on Iran’s energy sector and increase supply. of oil.

Oil prices fell earlier this week after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, known as OPEC +, agreed to gradually ease oil production cuts starting in May.

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“Crude prices appear to be on the verge of consolidating as energy traders need to see exactly how OPEC + delivers on its plan to boost production, and whether the EU will move closer to virus immunity by the end of June. “said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA.

(Reporting by Jessica Jaganathan; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)

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