Crude settled higher on Friday, after the U.S. launched a cruise missile attack against Syria while the number of active U.S. drilling rigs rose for an twelfth straight week.
Oilfield services firm Barker Hughes reported its weekly U.S. rig count rose by 10 to 672, it was the twelfth straight weekly increase.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange crude futures for May delivery gained 54 cents to settle at $52.24 a barrel, while on London’s Intercontinental Exchange, Brent added 29 cents to trade at $55.17 a barrel.
Although, Syria is no longer a significant oil producer, investors fretted over potential supply disruptions in the region, as Syria neighbors and has relationships with big oil producers in the oil-rich region.
The concerns over a disruption is supply overshadowed renewed fears that rising U.S. crude and shale production could weigh on OPEC’s efforts to reduce a glut in supply, after U.S. crude inventories rose to record high on Wednesday.
Market participants, however, remained optimistic that OPEC would extend its current deal with non-OPEC members to cut production beyond June, after Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich expressed his concern that the deal to cut supply hasn’t delivered as much as expected.
In November last year, OPEC and other producers, including Russia agreed to cut output by about 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd).