Oil futures climbed Friday, with U.S. prices up a second week in a row and marking another settlement at the highest since October 2018. Among the reasons behind the recent advances for oil has been a weaker U.S. dollar, as well as “expectations that demand will pick up further as the vaccination programs in the U.S. and U.K. ramp up further, and restrictions get eased further,” said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK. “Downside risk to prospects of increased demand remains a rise in infection rates and slow vaccination rates in Asia, which could prompt slower economic re-openings,” he said. West Texas Intermediate oil for July delivery rose 81 cents, or 1.2%, to settle at $69.62 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. For the week, front-month contract prices gained 5%, according to FactSet data.

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