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Oil rises on Syria tensions, up most in week since July

Reuters  |  NEW YORK 

By Jessica Resnick-Ault

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices rose on Friday, making the largest weekly gain since July, supported by concerns about the possibility of Western military action in and reports of dwindling global

The prospect of military action in that could lead to confrontation with hung over the but there was no sign a U.S.-led attack was imminent.

Traders sought to lock in ahead of the weekend, said John Kilduff, at hedge fund Management.

"The geopolitical jitters just keep getting priced in here more and more, as we get closer to the moment of the strikes, if there are any," Kilduff said, noting posed a risk to global stability because of its relationship with other powerful

"is a client state of both and and the risk for escalation is quite high and I think that is what the market is worried about."

Brent crude recovered from losses early in the session and settled up 56 cents at $72.58 a barrel, with a $5.48 weekly gain, or 8 percent.

U.S. Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 32 cents to $67.39 a barrel, up 8 percent for the week.

Hedge funds and money managers cut their bullish wagers on U.S. crude for the second week in a row in the week to April 10, data showed on Friday [L1N1RQ1RU]. The move came even as prices rose, according to data released by the CFTC.

On Wednesday this week, both hit their highest since late 2014 after U.S. warned missiles "will be coming" in response to a in and after said it intercepted missiles over

On Thursday, Trump tweeted that an attack on "could be very soon or not so soon at all."

"The Syrian escalation risk cannot be fully written off, but we view that it deserves less of a premium than three days ago," Petromatrix said in a note.

A surplus in global is also close to evaporating, OPEC said on Thursday, adding its collective output fell to 31.96 million barrels per day (bpd) in March, down 201,000 bpd from February.

Vienna-based OPEC and its allies are expected to extend their supply reduction pact into 2019 even though the global glut of crude looks set to be eradicated by September, OPEC told

The International Energy Agency (IEA), which coordinates the of industrialized nations, signalled on Friday that markets could become too tight if supply remains restrained.

"It is not for us to declare on behalf of the agreement countries that it is 'mission accomplished', but if our outlook is accurate, it certainly looks very much like it," the IEA said.

Meanwhile, China's March climbed to the second-highest level on record.

U.S. drillers added seven in the week to April 13, bringing the total count to 815, the highest since March 2015, General Electric Co's firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.

(Additional reporting by in New York, Osamu Tsukimori in Tokyo and Shadia Nasralla in London; Editing by Clive McKeef)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, April 14 2018. 03:13 IST
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