4/17, 8:36 AM (Source: TeleTrader)
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Brent hits over five-month high on China's expansion

Oil traded slightly in the green on Wednesday, helped by an acceleration of economic activity in China in the past quarter. Brent for delivery in June hit $72.1 per barrel for the first time since November 12. Year-over-year growth came in at 6.4%, surprising to the upside. The world's second-largest economy boosted industrial production by 8.5% on an annual scale in March, while retail sales jumped by a stunning 8.7%.

Earlier, the American Petroleum Institute's weekly report showed a fall of 3.1 million barrels in inventories of crude in the United States before today's official report. Furthermore, reserves in the industry hub in Cushing declined by 1.6 million and gasoline in stock fell by 3.6 million barrels, according to the private data, which may also indicate demand and the economy are picking up. Conversely, the figure for distillates grew by 2.3 million barrels.

West Texas Intermediate for settlement next month was testing the strongest level since November 1, trading 0.69% higher at $64.49 per barrel. The other contract, a global benchmark, was 0.42% in the green at $72.02 for one barrel.

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