Global benchmark Brent crude surged nearly $2 a barrel on Thursday, lifted by concern about a steep drop in exports from Venezuela and worries OPEC may not raise production at its meeting this month. Brent crude futures LCOc1 settled up $1.96 a barrel, or 2.6 percent at $77.32. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 rose $1.22, or 1.88 percent to $65.95 a barrel. Surging U.S. production has capped gains in WTI prices, widening the grade’s discount to Brent to more than $11 a barrel CL-LCO1=R. Crude prices got an early lift on concerns about exports from Venezuela. Gains grew when Algeria’s oil minister indicated OPEC would focus on balancing the market rather than on rolling back production caps. “They’re all seeming to push back on the Saudis’ […]