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West Texas Intermediate traded near a six-week high after stockpiles at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery point for the contract, dropped. Brent climbed above $110 a barrel on signs that the crisis in Ukraine is escalating.
Futures increased as much as 1.2 percent in New York. Cushing supplies slid 771,000 barrels last week to 26.8 million, the lowest level since October 2009, according to the Energy Information Administration. Nationwide inventories grew more than five times as much as forecast. Ukraine began an offensive against separatists in its east, recapturing an airport amid claims that Russian special forces were fomenting unrest.
WTI for May delivery advanced 54 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $104.29 a barrel at 10:38 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract traded at $104.54 before the release of the report at 10:30 a.m. in Washington. Futures jumped to $104.99 earlier, the highest level since March 3. The volume of all futures traded was 19 percent above the 100-day average.
Brent for June settlement rose 59 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $109.95 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. Prices climbed above $110 for the first time since March 4. The May contract expired yesterday. Volume was 12 percent above the 100-day average.
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