Crude oil prices reached a record high to surpass $80 per barrel on Wednesday after a government report said oil inventories dropped sharply.
The U.S. Department of energy said today that oil inventories dropped 7.01 million barrels to 322.6 last week. Analysts had expected drops of about 2.7 million barrels.
The prices surge comes despite an announcement yesterday by the 12-nation OPEC cartel that it would boost its production of crude by 500,000 barrels per day, the first increase in more than 2 years.
U.S. light sweet crude oil futures for October rose $1.68 to $79.91 on the New York Mercantile Exchange after reaching a high of $80.18 earlier. London Brent crude rose $1.30 to settle at $77.68 on the ICE Futures Exchange.