Oil prices soar on production rumors, U.S. labor


NEW YORK, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- Strong U.S. labor figures and potential cooperation between Russia and some OPEC members pushed crude prices well into the black in early Thursday trading.

The U.S. Labor Department reported the number of applications for unemployment assistance declined 16,000 to a seasonally adjusted 278,000. The four-week average declined less substantially by 2,250 to 283,000.

Crude oil prices rallied in response to the sense of optimism from the United States, where labor has improved despite weakness elsewhere in the global economy. Brent shot up more than 5.7 percent in early trading to move just above $35 per barrel in early Thursday trading in New York. West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark price for crude oil, gained 5.4 percent to start the day at $34.07 per barrel. (by Daniel J. Graeber, UPI)

Also see our look at the Oil Price Rollercoaster