NYMEX crude oil prices ease in Asia on profit taking, API data

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Investing.com - Crude oil prices eased in Asia on Wednesday in a bout of profit-taking after a report U.S. output this year and next may be less than expected initially boosted the commodity, but industry data subsequently presented a bearish near-term stocks view.

The U.S. is likely to produce 8.37 million barrels a day of crude oil this year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said Tuesday. The projection is down from 8.39 million barrels a day in the EIA's previous forecast, but still up from 7.44 million barrels a day in 2013.

In 2015, the EIA forecasts production of 9.13 million barrels a day of oil, down from 9.16 million barrels a day previously.

Separately, the American Petroleum Institute, an industry group, said late Tuesday that its own data for the week showed a 7.1-million-barrel build in crude stocks, according to industry sources. The group also said gasoline supplies fell by 3.7 million barrels in the week and distillate stocks rose by 293,000 barrels, according to the sources.

Crude futures shot up on Tuesday on fears the Russian standoff in Ukraine may escalate, which could disrupt supply from oil-rich Russia.
Crude gains as Ukraine crisis heats up anewUkraine crisis brews, sends oil prices gaining

On the New York Mercantile Exchange,crude oil for delivery in May traded at $102.34 a barrel, down 0.22%, after hitting an overnight session low of $100.67 a barrel and a high of $102.49 a barrel.

Brent crude on the ICE futures exchange rose $1.85, or 1.8%, to $107.67 a barrel on Tuesday

Overnight, oil prices firmed after pro-Russian activists in Ukraine's industrial center of Donetsk declared their independence from Kiev, a move Ukrainian leaders described as part of a Russian-orchestrated plan to justify an invasion.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said earlier that Russian agents were encouraging unrest in eastern Ukraine and said Moscow was preparing military action in the region.

Capping gains, however, were expectations for Libyan crude exports to normalize.

Libyan government officials and rebels reached an agreement over the weekend to re-open Zueitina and Hariga ports, which normally export a combined total of 200,000 barrels a day, mostly to Europe.

The news sent oil prices falling, as the end to the standoff will increase global supply.

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This article appears in: Investing , Forex and Currencies

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