Oil prices regain little ground lost in previous session

Crude Oil Price Triangle Breakdown Could Give Pause to USD  CAD

West Texas Intermediate for August delivery rose 38 cents to $57.16 on the New York Mercantile Exchange as of 12:32 p.m. London time.

In an interview with Bloomberg Wednesday, Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said the U.S.

Brent crude futures were up 26 cents, or 0.4%, at $64.60.

Data from the US Energy Information Administration showed a larger-than-expected drawdown in crude stockpiles last week. They fell 1.1 per cent on Wednesday.

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton will visit Japan next week and may discuss the possibility of a coalition to guard merchant ships in waters near Iran, Kyodo reported, citing unidentified Japan-U.S. diplomatic sources. That compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 2.7 million barrels.

USA crude oil imports averaged 6.8 million barrels per day (b/d) last week, down 470,000 b/d from the previous week, while crude oil exports averaged about 2.5 million b/d, down about 514,000 b/d from the previous week, according to the Weekly Petroleum Status Report.

"You have people that were trying to ride the whole storm and a 9 million (-barrel) draw (in USA crude inventories) that went with it last week", said Bob Yawger, director of energy at Mizuho in NY. If confirmed, it would be the fifth consecutive weekly decline, the longest stretch since the beginning of 2018.

"Nevertheless, oil production in the Gulf of Mexico returning to normal following Hurricane Barry will limit price gains", Kumar said.

The upside remained capped somewhat after industry data showed a smaller-than-expected decline in US crude inventories. Distillate stockpiles grew by 5.7 million barrels, much more than expectations for a 613,000-barrel increase, the EIA data showed.

USA officials also said on Wednesday they were unsure whether an oil tanker towed into Iranian waters was seized, or rescued.

The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement said 1.1 million barrels per day of oil, or 58% of the region's total, and 1.4 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas output remained shut.

However, Iranian authorities later denied it was willing to negotiate over its ballistic missile programme, however, appearing to undercut Trump's statement.

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