Oil hits four-months highs, Brent reaches $68 on tighter supply

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US West Texas Intermediate rough futures were $ 57.89 per barrel, an increase of $ 1.02, or 1.79 percent, compared to the previous settlement price. United States crude oil exports have set annual record highs in each year since 2014, most recently averaging 2.0 million bpd in 2018.

The production cut agreement by Saudi Arabia-led OPEC and Russia-led OPEC is also contributing to the removal of additional supplies in the market to push prices higher.

The decline in inventories and output in the world's biggest crude producer alleviated some investor unease on the rising crude oil oversupply around the world.

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Yesterday's stellar headline prints showing that both crude and gasoline inventories fell sharply have opened prospects for a continuation of the bull trend having shaken out offers at the double top highs around 57.80 - a almost 4 million-barrel decline in last week's USA crude supplies along with evidence that US oil production may be faltering is likely to keep the trend underpinned. A week earlier, crude inventories had increased by over 7 million barrels, more than thrice the expected rise.

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Goldman said "current fundamentals will tighten physical markets further", driving up spot Brent crude futures above $70 per barrel "as supply losses continue (and) demand growth beats low consensus expectations". According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, U.S. commercial crude inventories fell last week as refineries hiked output.

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Crude oil is navigating levels last seen in mid-November 2018 further north of the $58.00 mark per barrel, always bolstered by a softer buck and a generalized better tone in the risk-associated complex.

"(But), worries about growth and future demand for crude oil remain just worries at this stage", said Saxo Bank's Hansen. Petrol stocks fell by 5.8 million barrels, compared to analysts' forecasts in a 2.5 million barrel survey at Reuters.

"Stymied net imports and refinery runs clambering above the 16 million barrel-per-day mark has been enough to yield a second draw to crude inventories in three weeks", commented Matt Smith, director of commodity research at ClipperData.

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Data from the Petroleum Institute showed that distillate stocks, including diesel and fuel oil, increased by 195,000 barrels, compared to a forecast of 1.9 million barrels.

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