Oil Futures Settle Lower As Inventories Climb

Crude oil futures settled lower on Wednesday, weighed by a stronger dollar and data showing a surge in U.S. crude stockpiles last week.

The dollar rose to a new yearly high, with the index climbing to 94.43.

Data released by U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed crude stockpiles increased by about 4.6 million barrels in the week ended September 24, rising for the first time in eight weeks. Markets had expected crude stockpiles to see a drop of 4.5 million barrels in the week.

West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for November ended down by $0.46 or about 0.6% at $74.83 a barrel.

Brent crude futures dropped by about $0.45 or 0.6% to $79.64 a barrel.

The EIA’s report also showed gasoline inventories rose by 200,000 barrels last week versus an expected increase of about 700,000 barrels, and distillate stockpiles rose by 400,000 barrels compared to an expected decline of 2.2 million barrels.

The American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday reported crude oil inventories rose by 4.1 million barrels last week.

Crude stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, storage hub, increased by 200,000 barrels last week, the EIA report showed. The report also said total U.S. petroleum production rose by 500,000 barrels to 11.1 million barrels per day.

Meanwhile, traders looked ahead to the upcoming meeting of The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, collectively known as OPEC+. The group is scheduled to meet on Monday (October 4) to discuss production plans.

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