Crude Recovers To End Higher In U.S.

U.S. crude on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 0.94 percent to $53.56 a barrel, while global benchmark Brent crude gained 0.76 percent to $56.89 a barrel.

U.S. crude oil inventories fell 7.1 million barrels at the end of last week, well beyond the 2.2 million drop seen, as companies cleared supplies for tax purposes at the year end and the higher refining runs prompted a surge in gasoline and distillate stocks, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday.

The official figures come after the American Petroleum Institute (API) reported late Wednesday that U.S. crude inventories fell 7.4 million barrels at the end of last week, well beyond the 1.7 million barrels drop seen.

Prices however are also supported by a forecast by Goldman Sachs for Brent at $59 a barrel in the first half of 2017 as a coordinated effort by OPEC and non-OEC oil producers to trim 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) from global supply in that period works through the markets and demand picks up to balance inventories.

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