U.S. crude inched closer to $101 a barrel on Tuesday, building on Monday’s gains ahead of weekly inventories data as investors shrugged off more U.S. sanctions on Russia and an imminent rise in Libyan exports.
Investors may be priming for a further drawdown in crude stocks at Cushing, Oklahoma, as new pipeline capacity diverts oil from the delivery point for West Texas Intermediate contracts to the Gulf Coast, although the country’s stockpiles are set to post a fresh high.
U.S. commercial crude stockpiles were forecast to have risen 1.9 million barrels last week, a preliminary Reuters poll of six analysts showed. Crude inventories hit 397.7 million barrels the previous week, the highest since records began over 30 years ago.
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