Oil gains on bigger-than-expected drop in U.S. crude stocks

Oil gains on bigger-than-expected drop in U.S. crude stocks

Oil prices rose on Wednesday after U.S. crude inventories dropped more than analysts expected, strengthening hopes of a fuel demand recovery in the world’s biggest economy.

Brent crude rose 0.3%, or 15 cents, at $44.65 per barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate oil gained 0.2%, or 9 cents, at $41.70 per barrel.

The American Petroleum Institute reported that crude stocks dropped by 4 million barrels last week, significantly bigger than analysts’ expectations for a 2.9 million-barrel decline. Official government data is to be released on Wednesday.

Still, the growing uncertainty on Washington’s deadlock on a coronavirus stimulus package to support the economy may weigh on oil prices soon.

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