U.S. crude hits 15-month highs after big drawdown

|By:, SA News Editor

U.S. crude oil settled at 15-month highs, climbing 2.6% to $51.60/bbl, after the government reported a large and unexpected draw, compared to expectations for a build, in domestic inventories.

In its sixth drop out of the past seven weeks, crude stocks fell 5.2M barrels in the week ended Oct. 14, vs. analyst expectations for a build of 2.7M barrels.

Also supporting oil today was evidence of declining production in China and optimism that OPEC would secure an output cut at its meeting next month.

The S&P energy sector is 1.6% higher, by far the biggest mover on the day, helping the broader S&P 500 to a modest 0.3% gain.

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