Oil Futures Settle Higher Ahead Of Inventory Data

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Crude oil prices moved higher on Tuesday amid hopes energy demand will pick up in the event of the U.S. policymakers deciding to provide additional stimulus to boost economic growth.

Traders were also reacting to reports saying crude oil inventories in the U.S. may have dropped in the week ending December 25th.

Reports citing a poll by Reuters say oil stockpiles may have dropped last week. The report says crude stocks likely fell by 2.1 million barrels in the week.

The official data from Energy Information Administration (EIA) is due out on Wednesday.

The American Petroleum Institute’s weekly oil report is due later today.

West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for February ended higher by $0.38 or about 0.8% at $48.00 a barrel.

Brent crude futures were up $0.36 or 0.7% at $51.26 a barrel a little while ago.

There are expectations that energy demand may see an increase sometime in the first quarter of the coming year thanks to positive developments on the vaccine front.

However, the reimposition of movement restrictions in the U.K. and several parts of Europe and Africa due to the spread of a new variant of the coronavirus remains a major concern.

The market is also looking ahead to the upcoming meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, including Russia. The meeting is scheduled to take place next Monday (January 4, 2021).


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