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Oil rose as a U.S. government report showed fuel demand increased last week and gasoline production dropped to the lowest level in almost two years.
Futures climbed as much as 0.6 percent after the Energy Department reported that total fuel consumption increased 7.5 percent to 19.2 million barrels a day in the week ended Jan. 20. Gasoline output tumbled 2.8 percent to 8.54 million barrels, the least since February 2010. Crude supplies rose 3.56 million barrels as fuel inventories dropped, the report showed.
Crude oil for March delivery rose 34 cents, or 0.3 percent, to $99.29 a barrel at 11:20 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures traded at $97.70 a barrel before the release of the report at 10:30 a.m. in Washington. Prices are up 15 percent from a year earlier.
Brent oil for March settlement increased 52 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $110.55 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.
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