ALSO READWill crude oil prices moderate? Crude pricing: Politically-motivated tinkering of oil could prove costlier Brent crude oil prices near 2015 high after North Sea pipeline shutdown Oil import bill to jump 25% to Rs 5.65 trn in FY18 as crude prices surge Oil prices down as supply glut, trade war concerns weigh on markets
Oil prices surged more than 3 percent on Tuesday as investors grew more confident the United States and China would resolve their trade dispute without damaging the global economy, while Middle East tensions and a weak dollar also supported prices.
In post-settlement trading, Brent hit $71.34, its highest since December 2014.
Prices of both crude benchmarks have risen more than 5 percent in the past two trading days. Both have erased their losses from last week, when concerns over a possible trade war between the two largest economies contributed to declines of more than 4 percent.
"Oil markets are getting a bounce on increasing speculation about Trump and Syria," Streible said.
U.S. President Donald Trump promised a swift response to a suspected chemical attack in Syria. Such a response is likely to increase the push for the United States to exit the Iran nuclear deal, Streible said, given Iran's support of the Syrian government.
Departures from the accord would result in renewed sanctions against Iran, which would hurt its oil industry.
Also supportive to crude prices was the weakness of the U.S. dollar. The dollar fell against a basket of major currencies <.DXY>, hitting its lowest in nearly two weeks. Because oil is dollar-priced, a stronger greenback makes purchases in other currencies more expensive.
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia's Energy Ministry said it would keep exports below 7 million bpd and restore its inventories to normal levels.