Oil ends higher after surprise drop in US reserves

Oil prices ended higher on Wednesday, following a surprise sharp drop in US commercial crude stockpiles.

A barrel of North Sea Brent for October delivery gained 1.41% to $93.65.

Meanwhile, the barrel of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in September gained 1.82% to 88.11 dollars.

Still, oil remains far from this year’s highs, with Brent even hitting 91.51 for the day, a level it hasn’t hit since mid-February, before the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Stockpiles in the United States allowed crude oil to recover some of the ground lost this week on recession fears, following dim indicators in Europe and Asia that could weigh on demand for black gold.

According to the US Energy Information Agency (EIA), commercial oil and gasoline stockpiles fell in the week ending August 12: Crude stocks fell 7.1 million barrels (mb), to 425 mb, and those of gasoline fell 4.6 mb.

Analysts had expected a small increase in crude stocks of 800,000 barrels and a decrease of 1 mb in gasoline stocks.

“Crude stocks fell 6% below their five-year average at this time, and gasoline stocks are 8% lower, which may raise concerns as winter approaches” in the northern hemisphere, Phil Flynn estimated. , of Price Futures Group. In a context of limited supply, these concerns favor higher prices.

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