Oil prices rose by about 1% on Friday after data revealed lower fuel inventories as a result of a winter storm that hit the United States at the end of the year, adding to gains from the previous trading session.
After rising 85 cents on Thursday to close trading at $78.69, Brent crude futures last increased by 79 cents, or 1%, to $79.48 per barrel at 02:03 GMT.
Additionally rising by 80 cents, or 1.1%, to $74.47 per barrel were U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures. By the end of the session, they had gained 83 cents and closed at $73.67.
According to information released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Thursday, distillate inventories, which include diesel and heating oil, dropped more than expected in the week before December 30. In contrast to expectations, they decreased by 1.4 million barrels.
According to EIA data, the United States’ gasoline inventories decreased by 346,000 barrels last week, as opposed to analysts’ expectations of a 486,000-barrel decline.
Despite rising COVID infections, China’s services activity declined in December for the fourth consecutive month, but the rate of declines slowed and business confidence reached a 17-month high.
The world’s largest importer of crude oil, China, abruptly changed its strict zero-COVID policy in the first few days of December in response to infrequent public protests, which resulted in an increase in infections across the entire nation.