Oil rallies almost 2 percent on China import boost, US-Iran tensions

Draw in crude inventories lifts oil prices

EIA yesterday reported a 2.8-million-barrel draw in USA crude oil inventories for the week to October 6, lifting market spirits further amid higher oil demand growth projections from OPEC and growing Middle East tensions around Kurdistan.

The International Energy Agency estimated in its monthly report on Thursday that the decline in inventories this year will halt in 2018 due to rising supplies from the US and elsewhere.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were trading at US$51,06 per barrel at 0523 GMT, up 14 cents, or 0,3%, from their last settlement. Prices are up 4.4 percent this week.

Brent, the global benchmark, rose 52 cents, or 0.9%, to $56.77 a barrel. Imports averaged 8.5 million bpd between January and September, solidifying China's position as the world's biggest oil importer. "That's on the supportive side", Olivier Jakob, managing director of PetroMatrix, said.

Global oil stockpiles will fall this year by 300,000 barrels a day as stronger demand and output curbs by OPEC and Russian Federation whittle away a surplus, the IEA said Thursday in its monthly report.

President Donald Trump is expected to reveal in a speech Friday afternoon whether he will certify a 2015 worldwide agreement with Iran to curb the Islamic Republic's nuclear program in exchange for economic sanctions relief.

Barcelona ready to renew their pursuit of Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho
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China's robust imports have been driven by purchases for its strategic petroleum reserves.

Crude oil prices rebounded Friday morning ahead of a slew of just-released economic data. Instead, he gave the U.S. Congress 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions.

Unrest in Iraq, and possible US action on the Iran nuclear deal, also underpinned prices. At least 6,000 Kurdish fighters have been deployed in the oil-rich Kirkuk province following "threats" of attack from Iraqi forces, media network Rudaw reported.

Despite the bullish signals, Bernstein Research said the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries needed to extend its agreement to reduce oil output beyond its current March 2018 expiry date in order to clear stocks.

Angola's production, based on direct communication, was 1.657 million barrels per day, a monthly drop of 23,000 barrels, with no data from Nigeria in this case.

The oil price rose Thursday, on evidence production and inventories in the U.S. fell again, while data from China underscored strong demand for the commodity.

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