The United States oil prices rose from a near six-month low in early trade on Wall Street on Friday, as investors measured how stronger-than-expected jobs figures could factor into demand in the world’s largest crude consumer.
At 10:01 ET, Brent oil futures expiring in February had added 2.3% to $75.77 per barrel, while West Texas Intermediate crude futures had risen by 2.8% to $71.10 a barrel.
Prices also gained some support after Saudi Arabia and Russia called on fellow members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies OPEC+ to adhere to an agreement on output cuts made last week.
Markets were initially underwhelmed by the voluntary nature of the reductions. Russia and Saudi Arabia have led OPEC+ in trimming supplies over the past year in a bid to provide a boost to oil prices.
Despite the gains, both contracts remained lower for the week.
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Sentiment has been dented by low oil import figures from China, with data showing that oil shipments to the world’s largest crude importer hit a four-month low in November.
The reading pushed up concerns over cooling crude demand in China, especially after a steady build-up in its oil inventories this year.
It also came on the heels of several middling economic data figured for November, which pointed to sustained sluggishness in the country’s post-pandemic recovery.
Meanwhile, in the U.S, crude production was near record highs of over 13 million barrels per day in the week to Dec. 1, threatening to make the situation worse the time over slowing American oil consumption.