Crude oil futures settled roughly flat on Thursday after two successive days of strong gains, as traders reacted to inventory data and weighed energy demand prospects.
West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for July ended down $0.02 at $68.81 a barrel.
Brent Crude futures were down $0.14 or 0.19% at $71.21 a barrel a little while ago.
Data from U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed crude inventories in the country dropped by 5.1 million barrels last week, more than twice the expected drop.
The data showed gasoline inventories increased by 1.5 million barrels last week, while distillate stockpiles went up by 3.7 million barrels.
As per data released by the American Petroleum Institute, U.S. crude oil stocks fell by 5.36 million barrels in the week ended May 28th compared to a drop of 0.439 million in the previous week, and much higher than the market expectations of a 2.114 million barrels
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies agreed on Tuesday to gradually ease supply curbs through July. Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman that he expects oil demand in the U.S. and China to see a significant recovery and the acceleration in vaccine rollouts will likely lead to a “further rebalancing of the global oil market.”
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