Oil spikes as US inventories tumble by more than expected

West Texas Intermediate crude oil trades up 1.6% at $US46.94 a barrel after weekly US Energy Information Administration inventory data showed a bigger drawdown than expected. US inventories fell by 5.25 million barrels during the week ended May 5, economists were anticipating a drop of 2 million barrels, according to Bloomberg.

The energy component was already trading higher on Wednesday after data released by the American Petroleum Institute late Tuesday showed US inventories fell by 5.79 million barrels.

WTI has been under pressure for the last several weeks. The energy component struggled near $US54, and started to move lower after data released on April 20 showed a smaller than expected drawdown in oil inventories and the first jump in gasoline supplies in several months. Its price remained under pressure last week after key support near $US48 failed to hold.

WTI has fallen about 12.6% so far this year as talk of OPEC extending its production cut through the end of the year has failed to provide support.

Meanwhile, Brent crude oil, the international benchmark, is up 1.9% at $US49.89 per barrel on Wednesday, and has lost 12.4% this year.

Get the latest Oil WTI price here.

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