Oil prices surge on U.S. inventory data

NEW YORK — Oil prices rebounded strongly Wednesday as official data showed that U.S. crude stockpiles dropped much more than expected last week.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its weekly report Wednesday that U.S. crude inventories fell by 5.2 million barrels last week, notching the biggest one-week drop in U.S. inventories so far this year.

However, some analysts questioned whether the sharp rally following the EIA data would be sustained, amid persistent concerns about rising crude output from the United States.

The EIA forecasted Tuesday that U.S crude production is expected to average 9.3 million barrels a day in 2017 and almost 10.0 million barrels a day in 2018.

The West Texas Intermediate for June delivery jumped 1.45 U.S. dollars to settle at 47.33 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for July delivery climbed 1.49 dollars to close at 50.22 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange. (Xinhua)