Oil prices higher after sharp fall in US supplies
Oil prices climbed on Wednesday as official data revealed a far sharper drop in US crude inventories than had been forecast by the market.
Brent North Sea crude for delivery in July rose 39 cents to stand at $103.61 a barrel in late London deals.
New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) light sweet crude July added 45 cents to $93.76 a barrel.
"A big drop in inventories... helped both grades of crude oil" to move higher, said Matt Basi, head of UK sales trading at CMC Markets.
The US Department of Energy on Wednesday said the country's crude stockpiles had plunged by 6.3 million barrels in the week to May 31, while the analyst consensus was for a drop of only 400,000 according to Dow Jones Newswires.
Last week's data showed US crude stockpiles had jumped by three million barrels in the week ended May 24 to 397.6 million barrels, striking a record peak since the start of the weekly data in 1982.
Traders were also looking ahead to unemployment figures Friday from the United States -- the biggest oil-consuming nation.
© 2013 AFP