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MarketWatch MarketPulseFeb 22, 2019
U.S. oil settles higher, carves out nearly 3 1/2-month peak as China tariff talks progress
Crude-oil futures rallied Friday to a high of more than three months, with gains padding the commodity's weekly advance, as U.S. equities and other assets found traction against the backdrop of upbeat U.S.-China trade talks. April West Texas Intermediate crude gained 30 cents, or 0.5%, to finish at $57.26 a barrel, marking its highest finish since Nov. 12, according to FactSet data. For the week, WTI booked a roughly 3% gain. The oil market had finished lower Thursday after a U.S. government report revealed that domestic supplies climbed for a fifth straight week as production jumped to a record level, but ongoing evidence of declines in world-wide output capped price losses for the session. On Friday, for example, Baker Hughes weekly rig-count data showed the rigs drilling for oil edged back by four to 853. News reports said President Donald Trump would meet with China's top trade negotiator, Vice Premier Liu He, which has underscored optimism that a deal between China and the U.S. will strike a trade deal soon. China is a big importer of oil and its tiff on tariffs with Washington has been a drag on the commodity until recent signs of progress on talks emerged.

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