Oil Prices Hike on Ukrainiian Attacks on Russian Refineries

Crude oil futures jumped Wednesday after Ukraine struck oil refineries in Russia, underlining the risk that war in Eastern Europe poses to crude oil production and fuel supplies.

The West Texas Intermediate contract for April gained $1.57, or 2%, to $78.72 U.S. a barrel. The Brent contract for May added $1.13, or 1.4%, to $83.05 U.S. a barrel.

Ukrainian drones hit a Rosneft refinery in the Ryazan region about 130 miles from Moscow and the Novoshakhtinsk refinery in the Rostov region, according to Reuters. The strikes came one day after Ukraine hit a Lukoil refinery in Nizhny Novgorod, about 265 miles (about 420 kilometres) from Moscow.

U.S. commercial crude inventories, meanwhile, fell by 1.5 million barrels last week, according to data from the Energy Information Administration. Gasoline stocks declined by 5.7 million barrels, according to the EIA.

The Ukrainian attacks and the U.S. crude inventory drawdown have jolted oil prices out of a recent slump that had been caused by worries about demand in China as well as forecasts of robust supply in the Americas, particularly the U.S.

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