WTI Crude Oil Price Hits 60 bbl, Highest Since Mid-2015
Friday, US Crude Oil prices rose above 60 bbl on the final trading day of the year, touching their highest mark since mid-2015
International benchmark Brent Crude futures also rose, supported by ongoing supply cuts by top producers OPEC and Russia as well as strong demand from China.
Crude Oil prices closed Y 2017 with strong gains on signs the global glut that has dogged the market since Y 2014 is shrinking.
Brent Crude is up 17% since the beginning of the year and WTI Crude Oil finished 12% higher.
WTI Crude Oil futures hit 60.32, the highest since June 2015.
Brent Crude futures rose 41c to 66.57 bbl.
WTI prices were supported by data from the US Energy Information Administration late Thursday showing domestic Crude Oil production declined last week to 9.75-M BPD from 9.79-M BPD the prior week.
US output is up almost 16 percent since mid-2016, but still shy of the 10-M BPD most analysts had expected by year’s end, which would trail only Top exporter Saudi Arabia and Top producer Russia.
Analysts expect US production to top 10-M BPD in the next few weeks and to keep growing, limiting efforts by other producers to cap global supplies.
WTI prices were further boosted by an EIA report of a 4.6-M bbl weekly drop in US commercial Crude Oil storage levels. Inventories are down by almost 20% from historic highs last March, and well below this time in Y 2016 or in Y 2015.
Stay tuned in the New Year.
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