SEOUL Feb 5 U.S. crude oil futures gained in
early Asian trade on Wednesday on the expectation that U.S. oil
storage at a key delivery point would show a large drop with a
persistent cold snap driving demand for heating fuels in the
world's largest economy.
* U.S. crude oil futures rose 43 cents up at $97.62 a
barrel as of 0016 GMT after it ended 76 cents higher at $97.19 a
barrel on Tuesday.
* Brent oil settled 26 cents lower at $105.78, the
lowest settlement price since Nov. 8, hit by worries over
emerging markets where stocks pared losses but were
still down sharply for a second day on Tuesday.
* Traders expected oil inventory data to show that supplies
were beginning to drain in earnest from Cushing, Oklahoma, after
the startup of TransCanada's Keystone south pipeline as
they awaited inventory data from the U.S. Energy Information
Administration to be released later on Wednesday.
* U.S. commercial crude oil and gasoline stockpiles were
forecast to have risen last week, while distillates were seen
drawing down, an expanded Reuters poll of analysts showed on
* Data from industry group the American Petroleum Institute
showed on Tuesday that U.S. crude stocks rose last week as
refineries cut output, while crude stocks at Cushing declined by
1.6 million barrels, and distillates fell by 1.5 million
* On the supply side, North Sea crude output at Britain's
200,000 barrel-per-day Buzzard oilfield has restarted and will
return to normal levels in coming days, after an outage earlier
on Monday, its operator Nexen said on Tuesday.
* Tankers have started loading crude from Libya's 340,000
barrel-per-day (bpd) El Sharara oilfield again after bad weather
closed ports in the west of the country, and output should
return to normal on Tuesday, a National Oil Corporation
* Early Wednesday, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific
shares outside Japan inched up 0.13 percent,
while the Australian market added 0.2 percent.
* On Wall Street, the Dow ended up 0.47 percent,
while the S&P 500 added 0.76 percent and the Nasdaq
0.86 percent. The bounce helped pull MSCI's world index
from its lowest level since October.
* The euro eased a touch to $1.3510, still dogged by
speculation that the threat of deflation might nudge the
European Central Bank into easing policy at its meeting on
* The pullback in safe havens saw U.S. 10-year Treasury
yields shoved up 5 basis points to 2.63 percent.
Gold gave back some ground to $1,253.34 an ounce.
* The following data is expected on Wednesday: (Time in GMT)
0848 France Markit Services PMI
0853 Germany Markit Services PMI
0858 Euro zone Markit Services PMI
1000 Euro zone Retail sales
1315 U.S. ADP national employment
1500 U.S. ISM Non-manufacturing PMI