Oil prices neared $77 a barrel aided by a drop in crude stockpiles.

For November delivery US crude was up 9¢ to stand at $76.67 a barrel at 06.52 GMT, while London Brent crude rose 50¢ to $79.21 a barrel, reports Reuters.

Data from the American Petroleum Institute revealed distillates dropped by 2.8 million barrels last week, while petrol rose by three million barrels and crude stocks fell by 2.4 million barrels.