Oil prices increased today on expectations that oil stockpiles would drop significantly owing to the beginning of the summer driving season in the US, boosting demand for oil.
Brent crude rose by 29 cents to $109.53 a barrel, while US oil increased by 31 cents to settle at $102.01, reported Reuters.
Crude prices rose as oil traders focused more on the US, which is heading into the summer driving season boosting oil demand.
The US American Petroleum Institute data revealed oil stocks at the Cushing delivery hub in Oklahoma dropped by 590,000 barrels last week, while nationwide commercial crude stocks rose by 912,000 barrels to reach 390.7 million barrels.
Investors are now awaiting the US Energy Information Administration data, which is scheduled to release data regarding oil later today.
Oil prices were also supported by the deteriorating situation in Ukraine, where seven soldiers were killed and seven wounded in an ambush.
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Libyan National Oil Corporation (NOC) said that the country’s oil production is at 235,000bpd, but details of output at the larger El Sharara oilfield were still unclear after protesters ended a shutdown, signalling potential for slowdown in oil supplies.
But further rises in crude prices were controlled following a US official statement, which claimed that a deal between Iran and the six world powers over Tehran’s controversial nuclear programme is possible by the self-imposed 20 July deadline even though "there are some very significant gaps".
Image: US commercial crude stocks were expected to drop by 100,000 barrels last week from 397.6 million barrels. Photo: courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net/Michelle Meiklejohn.