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Oil Ends At 2-week High As Middle East Tensions Escalate

Crude oil prices climbed to a 2-week high on Thursday, extending recent gains, amid concerns about supply disruptions due to an escalation in tensions in the Middle East.

Buoyant U.S. economic data and slightly easing concerns about energy demand growth amid optimism about U.S.-China trade deal also helped oil's uptick.

Mounting worries about tensions in the Middle East outweighed recent data that showed an unexpected jump in U.S. crude stockpiles and the report from the International Energy Agency that said there is oversupply in the market despite OPEC-led cut.

West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for June ended up $0.85, or 1.4%, at $62.87 a barrel.

Brent crude oil futures were higher by $0.90, or 1.3%, at $72.68 a barrel by mid afternoon.

On Wednesday, WTI crude oil futures ended up $0.24, at $62.02 a barrel, adding on to a 1.2% gain recorded a session earlier.

News about a coalition led by Saudi Arabia launching air strikes on the Houthi-held capital Sanaa earlier in the day, in retaliation for the recent attacks on Saudi's oil infrastructure, raised concerns about supply disruptions in the region.

The Saudi-UAE-led coalition reportedly carried out a total of 19 attacks across rebel-held territory after the Iran-aligned rebels claimed responsibility for recent drone attacks on two Saudi oil pumping stations earlier in the week.

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