The West Texas Intermediate crude futures held above $112 per barrel on Friday as investors weighed an expected demand recovery in China and a looming EU ban on Russian oil against fears about a global economic slowdown.
This represents its highest level since 2014 as Russia continues its military operation in Ukraine.
Oil demand is expected to rebound in China as authorities in Shanghai lifted some Covid-19 curbs and gave residents the freedom to go out to shop for groceries for the first time in nearly two months.
The EU also proposed this month a total ban on oil imports from Russia, with approval being delayed due to a holdout from some member states.
In the US, data showed American driving mileage exceeded pre-pandemic levels in March, with gasoline and diesel prices hitting record highs.
Meanwhile, investors feared that high inflation and rising interest rates could lead to a global recession.
Recent sharp equity selloffs highlighted this risk, with analysts warning that oil could get caught up in the negative stock market feedback loop.