U.S. inventories of crude fell by 5.25 million barrels for the week ended May 5, according U.S. Energy Information Administration. Oil analysts had expected a smaller draw of 1.8 million to 2 million barrels. That was enough to fuel a big rally in oil prices with the U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate climbing 3.16% to $47.33 a barrel. Brent crude also rose 3.16% to close at $50.27.
The rally in oil prices let the Standard & Poor’s 500 edge higher by 0.11%.
And it led to strength in commodity sensitive emerging markets with the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (EEM) climbing 0.66% on the day. This ETF is now ahead by 17% for 2017 to the May 10 close.
What are called funding currencies–the dollar, euro, and yen–declined relative to commodity-connected emerging market currencies. That trend was helped by news that inflation in Brazil had tumbled to a 10-year low. (Inflation was, circularly, sent lower by strength in the real.)
So far, emerging markets have shrugged off selling in China as the government there reins in leverage in the banking system. The Shanghai Composite index fell another 0.9% today and is now down 7.18% in the last month.