US markets witnessed improved performance on Thursday (28 January 2016) after an uplift in the price of oil helped to bolster investor sentiment.
By the late afternoon in the UK (3.50 pm GMT), US light crude values had pared some of the heavy losses seen earlier this week and had risen by $0.96 per barrel to stand at $33.26. At the same time, Brent crude prices were up for the day by $1.10 to stand at $34.20 per barrel.
This latest upturn in performance comes despite new data published earlier this week that showed an increase in US stockpiles, and the positivity of the market at present is therefore spilling over into other areas.
Led higher by the rise in oil, major US indices including the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite Index had delivered growth in early trading on Thursday, although rises at the outset of the market for the Dow Jones Industrial Average had faded by this time.
Market commentator Phil Davis told Reuters: "Earnings have been generally good [in the oil segment], but the outlook for the second quarter is not good, and that is what is spooking people."
Looking forward, it is now hoped that a meeting between major producers of this precious commodity that took place earlier in January will lead to a breakthrough in paring back output to help address issues of oversupply that are forcing down prices right now.
However, it is as yet unclear if this will be the case and analysts are predicting it may take until at least the second half of the year before a major uplift in oil prices is maintained.