Oil prices jump rose on Wednesday for a second day, rebounding from recent losses as the U.S. dollar eased off recent gains and U.S. fuel inventory figures showed larger-than-expected drawdowns and a rebound in consumer demand.
Brent crude futures settled up $3.05, or 3.5%, at $89.32 per barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures ended up $3.65, or 4.7%, to $82.15 a barrel.
Analysts said oil prices, down more than 22% during the third quarter, may be bottoming out as Chinese demand shows signs of rebounding and the U.S. sales of strategic reserves come to a close.
“I do think we are bottoming, but it is going to continue to be exceptionally volatile and continue to be keeping easy speculative money away from this market,” said Rebecca Babin, senior energy trader at CIBC Private Wealth US.
U.S. inventory figures showed consumer demand rebounded, though refining product supplied remained 3% lower over the last four weeks than the year-ago period.
U.S. crude stocks fell by 215,000 barrels in the most recent week, while gasoline inventories declined by 2.4 million barrels and distillate inventories by 2.9 million barrels, as refining activity declined following several outages.
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