Oil prices edged lower on Wednesday after industry data showed US crude inventories suddenly rose last week, signaling a potential hitch in demand. U.S. Crude stocks rose by about 2.2 million barrels for the week ended August 5, according to market sources citing American Petroleum Institute figures. Analysts had predicted a small 400,000 barrel drop in crude inventories. Brent crude futures fell 73 cents, or 0.76%, to $95.58 a barrel by 0928 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 64 cents, or 0.71%, at $89.86.
Both contracts slipped by over $1 a barrel earlier in the session.
On Tuesday, oil prices settled a little lower following a changing trading session that saw investors weigh recessionary concerns with news that some oil exports had been suspended on the Russia-to-Europe Druzhba pipeline that transits Ukraine.
Ukraine stopped oil flows on the Druzhba oil pipeline to parts of central Europe because Western sanctions had prevented a payment from Moscow for transit fees from going through.
Flows along the southern route of the Druzhba pipeline have been affected while the northern route serving Poland and Germany was uninterrupted.