Oil prices rose towards $72 a barrel today aided by a drop in US inventories.

For July delivery, US crude gained 43 cents to $71.87 by 04.24GMT while ICE Brent crude rose 27 cents to $72.39, according to Reuters.

Euro zone finance ministers agreed to deploy a vast anti-contagion programme by struggling nations if required.

US crude stockpiles are expected to fall by 900,000 barrels while gasoline is forecast to rise by 100,000 barrels and distillate by 100,000 barrels, according to a Reuters poll.