12/01/2016 06:36 EST | Updated 12/02/2017 00:12 EST

OPEC momentum continues for crude, as oil prices soar above US$51 a barrel

TORONTO — Crude oil prices rose above US$51 a barrel this morning for the first time since October.

In late morning trading, January crude contracts were at US$51.50, up US$2.06 from their Wednesday settlement price.

The increase follows a one-day gain of US$4.21, fuelled by OPEC's decision to cut back oil production.

On the Toronto Stock Exchange, the S&P/TSX composite index was up a moderate 48.05 points at 15,130.90.

Earlier this morning, the index hit a 2016 high of 15,142.26.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average added 55.98 points to 19,179.54.

The broader S&P 500 index fell 0.17 of a point to 2,194.97 and the Nasdaq composite was down 56.46 points to 5,267.22.

The Canadian dollar was at 75.01 cents US, up 0.54 of a U.S. cent from Thursday's close.

January natural gas contracts rose 12 cents to $3.47 per mmBTU, the February gold contract fell US$4.40 to US$1,169.50 an ounce, and March copper contracts were up a cent at US$2.64 a pound.