Global oil prices have remained firm as rising fuel stocks and production outweighed a drop in US crude inventories.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures remained stable at $55.95 a barrel, while Brent crude futures LCOc1, the international benchmark for oil prices, jumped 7 cents, trading at $61.29 a barrel, according to Reuters.

Based on government data, US crude stocks fell by 5.6 million barrels to 448.1 million barrels in the week leading up to 1 December.

Meanwhile, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that gasoline stocks increased by 6.8 million barrels to 220.9 million barrels.

However, distillate inventories rose by 1.7 million barrels.

“This suggests that refiners may not need to process as much crude in the future.”

Futures brokerage firm OANDA Asia-Pacific trading head Stephen Innes was quoted by the news agency as saying: “Traders were more concerned about the steep rise in gasoline inventories.”

ANZ was quoted by the news agency as saying: “This suggests that refiners may not need to process as much crude in the future.

“The EIA report also showed that US production increased again.”

OPEC and other producers, including Russia, have been engaged in curbing the supply glut in an attempt to stabilise oil prices.

In order to achieve their objective, the producers reached an agreement last year to cut production, which was extended recently until the end of next year.

However, rising US production continues to be an influential factor in oil markets.