WTI and Brent Crude Post Gains on Thursday

Oil futures finished slightly higher Thursday, with a second weekly decline in domestic crude supplies helping prices recoup some of their recent losses, according to Bloomberg MarketWatch.

August West Texas Intermediate crude advanced 21 cents, or 0.5%, to settle at $42.74 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

On the London ICE Futures Exchange, August Brent crude, the global benchmark, added 40 cents, or 0.9%, to end trading at $45.22 a barrel.

Prices fell Wednesday as data from the Energy Information Administration revealed a weekly climb in the U.S. crude production, feeding concerns that efforts by other major producers to cut global supplies will fail. The report also revealed that crude oil stockpiles declined for a second week in a row.

Data showed U.S. shale oil producers churned out 9.35 million barrels last week, almost 8% higher than the same period last year. While production growth rates showed signs of slowing down, the data reaffirmed market fears that U.S. producers have become more efficient to weather low prices.

Meanwhile, ING Commodities expects the impact from Tropical Storm Cindy in the Gulf of Mexico, which has already closed some oil rigs and platforms, will likely push crude inventories lower next week.

The storm had prompted the shut in of 17.2% of oil production and 0.3% of natural gas output in the Gulf by Wednesday afternoon.

Back on the New York Mercantile Exchange, July natural gas ended at $2.894 per million British thermal units.


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