Oil gains on stimulus optimism ahead of Biden inauguration
By Scott DiSavino NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices climbed with U.S. stock markets on Tuesday ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration as U.S. president on optimism that more government stimulus will eventually lift global economic growth
By Scott DiSavino
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices climbed with U.S. stock markets on Tuesday ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration as U.S. president on optimism that more government stimulus will eventually lift global economic growth.
Brent futures for March delivery rose $1.08, or 2.0%, to $55.83 a barrel by 1:25 p.m. EST (1825 GMT), while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude rose 52 cents, or 1.0%, to $52.88. Front-month February WTI futures expire on Wednesday.
Wall Street's main indexes rose after upbeat earnings from big U.S. banks and comments from U.S. Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen ahead of Biden's inauguration on Wednesday.
Yellen urged lawmakers to "act big" on the next coronavirus relief package, adding that the benefits outweigh the costs of a higher debt burden.
"As we are approaching the beginning of the Biden administration era in the U.S., traders now have their hopes up for a rapid positive effect on markets coming from the promised ($1.9 trillion) stimulus package," said Rystad Energy's head of oil markets, Bjornar Tonhaugen.
Investors were also upbeat on demand in China, the world's top crude oil importer, after data showed its refinery output rose 3% to a record high in 2020.
Halliburton Co, meanwhile, predicted a recovery in the global oil and gas industry from the second quarter after the oilfield services provider beat profit estimates on cost cuts and modest gains in activity following last year's slump.
And OPEC's secretary general said he was cautiously optimistic the oil market would recover this year from the slump in demand brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.
Crude prices rose even though the International Energy Agency (IEA) cut its outlook for oil demand in 2021 but pointed to a recovery in the second half of the year to an annual average of 96.6 million barrels per day.
(Additional reporting by Shadia Nasralla in London and Florence Tan in Singapore; Editing by Marguerita Choy and David Goodman)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
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