Oil prices nudged up on Monday, with Brent futures set to post a fifth straight monthly gain, as global stimulus measures underpin prices even as demand struggles to return to pre-COVID levels in a well supplied market.
Brent crude futures for November climbed 28 cents, or 0.6%, to $46.09 a barrel by 0435 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was at $43.15 a barrel, up 18 cents, or 0.4%.
Brent is set to close out August with a fifth successive monthly price rise, having peaked at $46.23 a barrel on Aug. 5, the highest level since March is on track for a fourth monthly rise, reaching $43.78 a barrel on Aug. 26 when Hurricane Laura struck.
Technical charts showed that prices may nudge higher, with Brent heading toward $47 and revisiting its August high, according to Reuters market analyst Wang Tao.
Oil markets largely shrugged off the hurricane’s impact on Friday as energy companies continued efforts to restore operations at U.S. Gulf Coast offshore platforms and refineries shut before the storm.
A weak U.S. dollar and a surprisingly strong performance in China’s services sector have supported oil prices even though fuel demand has struggled to recover amid the pandemic and supplies remain ample, although crude may face hurdles going forward, analysts said.