US oil inventories fell more than expected last week.
The latest data from the Energy Information Administration showed that commercial crude inventories fell by 3.9 million barrels in the week ended May 1.
Last week, the build of inventories slowed down, rising by 1.9 million barrels.
The consensus forecast was for a decline by 1.5 million barrels.
That brought the total to 487 million barrels, keeping inventories at the highest level for this time of year in at least 80 years, but this report could show something of a turn in the relentless crude inventory build we’ve seen over the last several months.
After the release, West Texas Intermediate crude oil rose by more than 3% at as much as $US62.50 per barrel.
WTI crossed $US60 on Tuesday for the first time since December.
In an email Tuesday, Morgan Downey, CEO of Money.net, wrote: “Finally, after an expected lag, the decline in drilling by fracking will begin to show up as a decline in inventories. This should provide continued support for the recent rally in crude oil.”