U.S. crude futures up more than $1

NEW YORK Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:31am EST

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NEW YORK Jan 17 (Reuters) - U.S. crude rose more than $1 on Thursday as reports showing a drop in initial jobless claims last week and a rise in housing starts in December helped boost oil prices, as did concerns about an attack by Islamist militants on an Algerian gas plant.

U.S. front-month February crude was up $1.12 at $95.36 a barrel at 9:27 a.m. EST (1427 GMT), having traded from $93.80 to $95.40. (Reporting by Robert Gibbons; Editing by Gerald E. McCormick)

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