(Bloomberg) -- Oil held gains at an eight-month high after a surprise drop in U.S. crude stockpiles and a weaker dollar supported prices that have been boosted by vaccine breakthroughs.Futures in New York were steady near $46 a barrel after closing up 1.8% on Wednesday. U.S. oil inventories fell by 754,000 barrels last week, government data show, compared with forecasts for a build. A dollar index was near a two-year low, boosting the appeal of commodities priced in the currency.Crude has jumped around 27% in November as signs Covid-19 vaccines could soon be rolled out led to expectations for a swift recovery in energy demand next year, while also reshaping the oil futures curve. Chinese and Indian refiners, meanwhile, have issued a flurry of buy tenders seeking crude for loading in January, highlighting the strong demand coming from parts of Asia.The rapid price gains pose a headache for OPEC+ before its meeting next week to decide whether to postpone a planned increase in output, as it gives members who want to pump more scope to argue a delay is unnecessary. In the latest sign of rifts within the group, Iraq’s deputy leader said that OPEC should take members’ economic and political conditions into account when deciding production quotas rather than adopting a “one-size-fits-all” approach.See also: Iraq Voices Frustration With OPEC Days Before Crunch Meeting“The U.S. crude inventory data fits the market narrative, but with the OPEC meeting on Monday, gains will be more cautious from here,” said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at Oanda Asia Pacific. Iraq and the U.A.E. are making noises but it’s unlikely OPEC+ will surprise by going ahead with output increases from January, he said.In what’s possibly a harbinger of better U.S.-Chinese relations, President Xi Jinping broke his silence on Joe Biden’s election win. The Chinese leader sent the U.S. president-elect a message that he hopes to “manage differences” and focus on cooperation between the world’s two largest economies. Any easing of tensions would likely support economic growth and aid energy demand.The Energy Information Administration report also showed a decline in inventories at the storage hub in Cushing, Oklahoma and the 10th straight draw in distillate supplies. But there were some bearish data points: gasoline stockpiles rose by over 2 million barrels and oil production ticked higher.Brent’s one-year timespread flipped into backwardation, a sign of tighter supplies, this week. Oil has also been supported by renewed tensions in the Middle East, with attacks on a fuel depot in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah and on an oil tanker at a terminal on the Red Sea.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.