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Updated from 9:40 a.m. EDT

Oil futures rose to yet another record high Thursday as Russia's biggest producer had another legal setback and buying kicked in after the previous session's decline.

Nymex crude for September delivery settled up $1.58, or 3.7%, to $44.41. In London, Brent crude was up $1.39 to $40.27.

The gains follow a session in which futures eased 3% after touching another all-time high. A report that Saudi Arabia planned to open two oil fields for production ahead of schedule helped allay supply concerns that have kept crude prices stubbornly high for months.

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Markets were bushwhacked Thursday when Russia's government announced it was withdrawing permission for major oil exporter Yukos to access its bank accounts. The company, which has been flirting with bankruptcy because of a multibillion-dollar tax bill, had previously been informed it could use the accounts to help fund production.

According to


, permission was withdrawn Thursday by Russia's Justice Ministry, which said procedure in the case had "violated legal norms."

Thursday's gain reflects a recurrent habit of traders to buy any dip in the 21-year-old Nymex contract, which is up more than 40% this year and has spent the better part of two months above $40.