Oil prices rose on Thursday amid investors’ optimism as Britain began administering COVID-19 vaccine and the United States appeared set to approve the vaccine as well.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading up 0.2% at $48.95 per barrel, at 9.05 am Makkah time.
WTI crude rose 0.3% to $45.65 a barrel.
“Optimism over the vaccine prevails and continues to limit any serious downside action,” Reuters reported, citing Axi chief market strategist Stephen Innes.
Vaccinations in the US could start this week, with a panel of advisers scheduled to meet today, Dec. 10, to discuss whether to recommend to the Food and Drug Administration emergency use authorization of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, the report said.
Canada approved its first COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday, Dec. 9, and said inoculations would start next week.
Meanwhile, US crude inventories rose by 15.2 million barrels in the week to Dec. 4, the Energy Information Administration said.