Energy sector stocks on the S&P 500 undefined index were running up the charts Wednesday, led by the likes of Murphy Oil (MUR) - Get Murphy Oil Corporation Report, Newfield Exploration (NFX) and Chesapeake Exploration (CHK) - Get Chesapeake Energy Corporation Report.
The sector was up nearly 2% as a whole by Wednesday's closing bell with integrated oil majors Chevron (CVX) - Get Chevron Corporation Report and ExxonMobil (XOM) - Get Exxon Mobil Corporation Report both up about 0.5%, and oil and natural gas production companies up more than 2% on average, according to Factset.
The rally comes as the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell by 5.2 million barrels in the week ended Oct. 14.
The larger-than-expected inventory drop sent West Texas Intermediate crude futures to a one-year high of $51.89 on Wednesday afternoon.
WTI crude contracts for November delivery were trading up about 2.2% at $51.41 by market close Wednesday. Global benchmark Brent crude contracts were also up about 1.7% to $52.55 around 4 p.m.
The market's biggest winners were Murphy, up 4%; Newfield, up 3.9%; Marathon Oil (MRO) - Get Marathon Oil Corporation (MRO) Reportup 3.2%, Chesapeake, up 3.1%; and Apache (APA) - Get Apache Corporation Report, up 2.8% by the closing bell.
Natural gas-levered players Cabot Oil & Gas (COG) - Get Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation Report and Southwestern Energy (SWN) - Get Southwestern Energy Company Reportwere down as natural gas prices fell more than 2% by the end of the trading day.
In contrast, independent oil and petroleum product refiners were slumping Wednesday afternoon as the EIA reported total motor gasoline inventories increased by 2.5 million barrels week-over-week.
Meanwhile, an unexpected third quarter profit reported Wednesday by oilfield services provider Halliburton (HAL) - Get Halliburton Company (HAL) Reportbrought its stock up more than 4% and with it the company's respective sector.
Industry-leading Schlumberger (SLB) - Get Schlumberger NV Report (reporting third quarter earnings Thursday) and smaller competitor Baker Hughes (BHI) were propped up 2.5% and 2.4%, respectively, on their peer's good tidings.
With the help of solid energy and industrial sector performances, the S&P 500 index finished Wednesday trading up 0.22%.