Investing.com

Investing.com - Crude oil prices gained in Asia on Wednesday after industry data showed a solid drop in U.S. crude stocks and geopolitical events offered support.



The American Petroleum Institute, an industry group, said late Tuesday that its data showed a 10.3-million-barrel drop in crude stocks. The group also said gasoline supplies rose by 135,000 barrels and distillate stocks increased by 1.4 million barrels.



Analysts expect the EIA to report that stocks rose by 750,000 barrels last week. The closely watched survey from the Energy Information Administration is due at 10:30 a.m. EDT Wednesday.



On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate crude oil for delivery in July traded at $102.87 a barrel, up 0.52%, after hitting an overnight session low of $101.53 a barrel and a high of $102.47 a barrel.



Brent crude on the ICE futures exchange rose 32 cents, or 0.3%, to $109.69 a barrel on Tuesday.



Geopolitical concerns also sent oil prices rising on fears supply from two key markets, Russia and Libya, may face disruptions.



Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists in the eastern reaches of the country continued to clash on this week, which rattled nerves in energy markets.



Ukraine will hold elections on Sunday, and concerns persist that Russia will meddle in the voting and escalate the crisis and affect shipments out of Russia, the world''s second-largest exporter after Saudi Arabia.



Elsewhere, tensions in Libya flared after gunmen stormed parliament on Sunday in some of the worst violence the country has seen since the 2011 war that ousted Muammar Qaddafi.



While the government and protesters recently agreed to reopen oilfields and ports, concerns the deal will fall through pressured prices higher, especially on news that French and Algerian oil companies are evacuating employees out of the country.



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