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Crude oil prices rose sharply on Thursday, lifting the most active crude futures contract to a one-month closing high, amid optimism about strong global economic recovery and increased demand for oil.

Recent data showing a drop in U.S. crude inventories last week, and a weak U.S. dollar contributed as well to oil’s uptick.

Data released by Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Wednesday showed U.S. oil stockpiles dropped by 7.169 million barrels last week, more than twice the expected drop of about 3.1 million barrels as the U.S. gears up for the last peak of its summer driving season.

Distillate stockpiles dropped by 1.732 million barrels last week, while gasoline inventories increased by 1.29 million barrels.

West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for October ended up by $1.40 or about 2% at $69.99 a barrel, the highest settlement since August 3.

Brent crude futures were up $1.30 or 1.8% at $72.89 a barrel a little while ago.

Traders also continued to react to the decision of OPEC and its allies to stick to their existing plan for gradual monthly oil-production increases.

OPEC+ agreed to add another 400,000 barrels per day of supply each month to the market through December. The group also raised its demand forecast for 2022 despite the risk of new lockdowns in several countries to fight the unresolved COVID-mutant spread.


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