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West Texas Intermediate crude traded near $106 a barrel after a government report showed that U.S. stockpiles unexpectedly increased. Brent dropped for the third time in four days as Iraq pledged to increase production and exports.
Crude supplies rose 1.74 million barrels to 388.1 million last week, the Energy Information Administration said. A 1.7 million-barrel decline was projected, according to the median of eight responses in a Bloomberg survey. Iraqi output has been unaffected by fighting and the country plans to increase exports next month, Oil Minister Abdul Kareem al-Luaibi said in an interview in Baghdad.
WTI for August delivery rose 1 cent to $106.04 a barrel at 10:43 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures traded at $105.85 before the release of the report at 10:30 a.m. in Washington. The volume of all futures traded was 51 percent higher than the 100-day average.
Brent for August settlement declined 94 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $113.52 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. Trading volume was 35 percent above the 100-day average.
The European benchmark crude traded at a $7.48 premium to Brent, down from $8.43 yesterday.
Crude stockpiles at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery point for WTI traded on Nymex, rose 416,000 barrels to 21.8 million in the week ended June 20, the EIA said.
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