Oil prices surged Thursday as U.S. consumer spending rebounded in May and jobless claims last week dropped.
Oil prices went up on favorable weekly jobless claims data. In the week ending June 22, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 346,000, a decrease of 9,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 355,000, the U.S. Labor Department said on Thursday.
Separately, U.S. personal income increased 0.5 percent in May following a 0.1 percent rise in April, while personal consumption expenditures rose 0.3 percent in May, reversing a 0.3 percent decline in April. The increase in consumer spending was the biggest since September 2009, according to the Commerce Department.
U.S. is the world's biggest oil-consuming country, accounting for about a fifth of global demand last year, according to BP's Statistical Review of World Energy. Traders believed that demand is growing as U.S. economy improved.
A report released by Energy Information Administration (EIA) Wednesday showed that last week, U.S. gasoline consumption climbed 0.6 percent to 8.89 million barrels a day, and refiners operation rate reached to 90.2 percent, the highest this year.
Light, sweet crude for August delivery climbed 1.55 dollars, to settle at 97.05 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Brent for August delivery went up 1.16 dollars, to close at 102 82 dollars a barrel.