Nigeria may be in to reap another bumper return from its abundant liquid gold.

After years of struggle in the global oil market, crude oil prices on Thursday hit their highest since December 2014.

International benchmark Brent futures were nearing $71 per barrel on Thursday. Both crude benchmarks are up by almost 60% since the middle of last year.

This trend is pushed up after U.S. crude inventories posted a 10th straight week of declines and as the dollar continued to weaken.

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Price support has also been coming from supply restrictions led by a group of producers around the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC and Russia, which started last year and are set to last throughout 2018.

"The Saudis and Russians continue to work together to talk the oil market higher and last night, the countries’ two oil ministers said they were working together on other longer-term projects as well,” said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at futures brokerage AxiTrader.

"That, and the US Dollar fall, along with another inventory draw combined to drive (crude) up,” he added.

Analysts said that rising oil prices would likely start to have an inflationary effect.

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