Oil Futures Settle Higher Despite Jump In Stockpiles

Crude oil futures settled higher on Thursday despite data showing a sharp increase in crude inventories in the U.S. in the week ended September 2nd.

Russia’s threat to halt oil and gas exports to some buyers supported oil prices. Worries about energy demand due to fresh Covid-related lockdowns in China and looming interest rate hikes by major central banks capped oil’s upside.

West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for October ended higher by $1.60 or nearly 2% at $83.54 a barrel.

Brent crude futures were up $0.86 or 0.98% at $88.86 a barrel a little while ago.

Data from Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed crude stockpiles rose by 8.844 million barrels last week, the highest for a week since the week ended April 8. Crude inventories were expected to drop by 250,000 barrels last week.

Gasoline inventories increased by a modest 333,000 barrels as against an expected draw of 1.667 million barrels. Meanwhile, distillate stockpiles rose by 95,000 barrels, much less than an expected increase of 530,000 barrels.

The data also showed that the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve saw an outflow of 7.5 million barrels last week.

A report released by the American Petroleum Institute on Wednesday showed U.S. crude inventories rose by 3.6 million barrels for the week ended Sept. 2, compared with expectations for a decline of about 733,000 barrels.

Gasoline inventories fell by 836,000 barrels last week, and distillate stocks decreased by 1.8 million barrels, the report showed.

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