Oil futures climbed toward the $50 level on Thursday, driven higher by a bullish outlook following weekly U.S. inventory data, but market participants expected the commodity to trade in a narrow range ahead of a OPEC meeting next week. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in September CLU7, -0.67% climbed 23 cents, or 0.5%, to $49.84 a barrel, after trading as low as $49.12 earlier in the session.
U.S. shale producers have been the biggest headwind to OPEC’s efforts to stem output.
October Brent crude LCOV7, -0.29% on London’s ICE Futures exchange rose 38 cents, or 0.7%, to $52.74, bouncing back from a loss of as much as 0.9% earlier on Thursday. Oil has experienced fitful trade over the past several weeks, but has managed to drift higher within range of its 200-day moving average at $49.45 a barrel.