New York, US (BBN) – Crude oil prices trimmed earlier gain in Asia on Wednesday an output disruption in Libya and shrugged off a larger than expected build in US inventories as estimated by an industry group and awaited official government figures later in the day.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange crude futures for May rose 0.25 per cent to $48.49 a barrel, while on London’s Intercontinental Exchange, Brent edged up 0.06 per cent at $51.48 a barrel, reports
U.S. crude stocks rose a more than expected 1.91 million barrels, the American Petroleum Institute (API) said late Tuesday, with gasoline stocks down a less than expected 1.10 million barrels and distillates down a more than expected 2.04 million barrels.
On Wednesday, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) will release official data on inventories.
Updated estimates of analyst expectations for inventories show expectations of a 1.357 million barrels build in crude, a 1.234 million barrels fall in distillates, and a 1.886 million drop in gasoline stocks.
Overnight, crude settled higher on Tuesday, after a severe disruption to Libyan oil supplies supported a rebound in oil prices while comments from officials suggesting OPEC could extend its current deal beyond June lifted sentiment.
Armed factions at the western Libyan oil fields of Sharara and Wafa blocked production, reducing output by 252,000 barrels per day (bpd), about a third of production, a source at the National Oil Corporation (NOC) said on Tuesday.
Elsewhere, Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh, said a global deal aimed at reducing the glut in supply is likely to be extended beyond June but that time is needed to discuss the subject.
In November last year, OPEC and other producers, including Russia agreed to cut output by about 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) in an effort to combat the oversupply issue that has pressured prices over the last two years.