SYDNEY (Reuters) – Oil prices nudged higher on Thursday to sit just off a four-month high reached in the previous session as investors focused on global production cuts and supply disruptions in Venezuela.
International Brent crude oil futures were at $67.61 a barrel at 0054 GMT, up 6 cents, or 0.1 percent, from their last close. Brent touched $67.76 a barrel on Wednesday, its highest since Nov. 16.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $58.29 per barrel, up 3 cents, or 0.1 percent, from their last settlement. WTI hit a high of $58.48 a barrel on Wednesday, the highest since Nov. 13.
“OPEC continues to cut output amid ongoing supply issues, while the situation in Venezuela remains bleak,” ANZ Bank said in a research note.
Two storage tanks exploded at a heavy-crude upgrading project in eastern Venezuela on Wednesday, according to an oil industry source and a legislator, while the country’s main oil terminal resumed shipments after a prolonged blackout.
U.S. crude stocks also fell last week as refineries hiked output, the Energy Information Administration said.
Crude inventories fell by 3.9 million barrels in the last week, compared with analysts’ expectations for an increase of 2.7 million barrels.
(Reporting by Colin Packham; editing by Richard Pullin)