Oil rises on U.S. inventory draw, dollar weakness

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Written By Pinang Driod

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Oil pump jacks are seen at the Vaca Muerta shale oil and gas deposit in the Patagonian province of Neuquen, Argentina, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Agustin Marcarian/File Photo

By Dmitry Zhdannikov and Trixie Yap

LONDON (Reuters) – Oil prices rose on Thursday, extending the previous session’s gains, on a bigger-than-expected weekly withdrawal from storage and a weaker dollar after the U.S. central bank signalled lower borrowing costs for 2024.

futures was up $1, or 1.3%, to $75.26 a barrel as of 0900 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude climbed 80 cents, or 1.1%, to $70.27.

“Crude oil prices rebounded before the Fed meeting, and the event lifted them further,” said CMC Markets (LON:) analyst Tina Teng in a client note.

The dollar dropped to a fresh four-month low on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve’s latest economic projections indicated the interest rate hike cycle has ended and lower borrowing costs were coming in 2024.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell said on Wednesday the historic tightening of monetary policy was likely over.

Lower interest rates reduce consumer borrowing costs, which can boost economic growth and demand for oil. A weaker dollar makes oil less expensive for foreign purchasers.

Prices were also boosted by a larger-than-expected draw from the U.S. crude inventory, Teng added.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said energy firms withdrew a bigger-than-expected 4.3 million barrels of crude from stockpiles in the week ended Dec. 8 as imports fell. [EIA/S]

Brent futures are down about 10% since OPEC+ announced plans for a new round of production cuts on Nov. 30. OPEC+ includes OPEC and allies such as Russia.

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