Oil rose back above $50 a barrel for the first time in three weeks as U.S. negotiators touted progress in trade talks with China and investors gained faith that OPEC will shrink output.
Futures extended gains in early Asian trading Wednesday after advancing 2.6 percent in New York. Talks with China are 'going very well,' U.S. President Donald Trump said in a tweet as the delegations in Beijing extended their meeting into Wednesday. Meanwhile, a post-market industry report was said to show substantial increases in American gasoline and diesel inventories, a bearish signal for crude demand.
West Texas Intermediate for February delivery climbed as much as 26 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $50.04 on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the first time it’s back above $50 since Dec. 17. It was at $50 at 8:12 a.m. in Singapore.
Brent for March settlement gained 2.4 percent to settle at $58.72 on the ICE Futures Europe Exchange in London on Tuesday. The global benchmark crude closed at an $8.61 a barrel premium to WTI for the same month.