Oil prices advance on growing fuel demand

Oil prices advance on growing fuel demand

Oil prices rose on Friday, extending gains on optimism about a recovery in fuel demand worldwide, despite a surge in coronavirus infections in some U.S. states and signs of a revival in U.S. crude production.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures gained 25 cents, or 0.7%, to $38.97 at 0643 GMT but were on track for a slight drop for the week.

Brent crude futures rose 32 cents, or 0.8%, to $41.37 and were also heading for a small decline for the week.

Analysts said satellite data showing a strong pick-up in traffic in China, Europe and across the United States pointed to an improvement in fuel demand.

However, there are fears a spike in COVID-19 infections in southern U.S. states could stall the demand recovery, especially as some of those states, such as Florida and Texas, are among the biggest gasoline consumers, Reuters reported.