Oil prices moved higher on Tuesday, boosted by encouraging news regarding COVID-19 vaccines.
The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for January delivery rose 63 cents to settle at $47.62 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, its highest level in nine months. Brent crude for February delivery increased 47 cents to close at $50.76 a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.
The United States started its COVID-19 vaccine rollout nationwide on Monday as death toll of the pandemic in the country topped 300,000. Britain and Canada also have started vaccinations.
Progress on vaccine rollout has somewhat helped ease market concerns over a spiral virus outbreak, expects noted.
Many European countries and US states are tightening coronavirus restrictions. Analysts expect oil prices to come under pressure in the first half of 2021, as risks remain high on both the demand and supply sides.
Meanwhile, the American Petroleum Institute (API) on Tuesday reported an increase of 1.973 million barrels of crude oil in the US crude oil inventories for the week ending December 11.
API reported an increase of 1.141 million barrels of crude oil inventories for the previous week ending December 4 while the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported a rise of 15.2 million barrels.