Oil held gains as an industry report showed American inventories shrunk.
Optimism over a partial U.S.-China trade deal grew as more U.S. soybean shipments cleared customs.
Futures in New York rose as much as 0.7%, on track for the largest monthly gain in almost a year. U.S. crude stockpiles dropped 7.9 million barrels last week, Reuters reported, citing American Petroleum Institute data.
China’s November imports of American soybeans surged to the highest in about two years, while President Donald Trump said that the trade pact between the two nations is “done.”
Oil has surged 35% so far this year as the world’s two largest economies made a breakthrough on an initial trade deal.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies also extended their agreement to reduce output, while oil production growth in the U.S. tapered off and stabilized at a lower level.
“Oil prices continue to show year-end strength supported by a combination of definitive progress on the U.S.-China trade deal, the OPEC+ output-cut agreement and slowing shale activity,” said Stephen Innes, chief Asia market strategist at AxiTrader Ltd.
“All of these factors are pointing to a stronger performance for oil in the beginning of next year, more than anyone had thought only a few months back.”
West Texas Intermediate for February delivery climbed as much as 43 cents on the New York Mercantile Exchange and traded 12 cents higher at $US61.23 (AUD$88.39) a barrel as of 9:02 a.m. in Singapore.
Markets were closed on Wednesday for the Christmas holiday.
Brent for February settlement rose 3 cents to $67.23 (AUD$88.39) a barrel. The contract closed 81 cents higher at $US67.20 (AUD$97.01) on Tuesday, a more than 7.5% increase so far this month.