Oil prices rose on Monday as OPEC reported that the global oil glut has been virtually eliminated, while U.S. crude's discount to global benchmark Brent widened to more than $7, its deepest in nearly five months.
Brent crude ended the day's trading up $1.11, or 1.4 percent, at $78.23 a barrel, its best close since Nov. 25, 2014. The contract hit $78.44 earlier in the session, its highest intraday level since Nov. 26, 2014.
U.S. light crude oil ended Monday's session up 26 cents at $70.96, remaining below last week's intraday 3½-year high of $71.89 a barrel.
The report from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries "was bullish. That absolute plunge in Venezuelan production ... just highlights how tenuous the market is in terms of the supply and demand balance," said John Kilduff, partner at Again Capital.