Investing.com - West Texas Intermediate oil turned lower on Wednesday, after data showed that oil supplies in the U.S. fell less than expected last week.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude oil for delivery in August dipped 0.06%, or 7 cents to trade at $105.80 a barrel during U.S. morning hours. Prices were at $106.19 a barrel prior to the release of the supply data.
U.S. oil futures ended down 0.4%, or 43 cents, on Tuesday to settle at $105.87. New York-traded oil futures were likely to find support at $105.45 a barrel, the low from June 17 and resistance at $107.54 a barrel, the high from June 16.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that U.S. crude oil inventories decreased by 579,000 barrels in the week ended June 13, less than expectations for a decline of 650,000 barrels.
Total U.S. crude oil inventories stood at 386.3 million barrels as of last week.
The report also showed that total motor gasoline inventories increased by 785,000 barrels, disappointing forecasts for a decline of 113,000 barrels, while distillate stockpiles rose by 436,000 barrels, above expectations for an increase of 250,000 barrels.
Meanwhile, oil traders monitored developments in Iraq, where the conflict between Sunni Islamist insurgents and Iraqi army forces continued.
Iraq''s largest oil refinery was attacked Wednesday by Sunni militants using machine guns and mortars, according to media reports.
Fears over an imminent disruption to supplies from the country lifted oil prices to nine-month highs earlier in the week. Prices have since pulled back amid expectations Iraq’s main oil-producing areas in the south will remain insulated from the sectarian violence sweeping the north.
Iraq produced approximately 3.5 million barrels a day of oil last month, making it OPEC’s second-biggest oil producer behind Saudi Arabia.
Market players now looked ahead to the Federal Reserve''s highly anticipated policy statement, expected later in the day.
Market analysts expect the Fed to taper its monthly bond buying program by another $10 billion from the current $45 billion, due to an improving economy.
The decision will be followed by a press conference with Chair Janet Yellen, amid speculation over the timing of possible interest rate increases. The central bank will also provide its latest forecasts for growth, inflation and interest rates.
Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange in London, Brent oil for August delivery eased up 0.05%, or 6 cents, to trade at $113.51 a barrel, while the spread between the Brent and U.S. crude contracts stood at $7.71 a barrel.
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