UPDATE 1-Brent dips below $106 as focus back on demand, stocks
* Investors eye June 18-19 Fed meeting, seeking clarity
* Prices likely to trade inside "zones of resistance"
* Impact of Iran presidential elections still unclear
SINGAPORE, June 17 (Reuters) - Brent crude futures traded below $106 a barrel on Monday, as worries over bulging U.S. inventories and soft global demand forecasts overshadowed supply concerns tied to Middle East tensions.
The European benchmark ended last week at its highest since April 9, after hitting an intraday peak of $106.64 on geopolitical worries in the Middle East and despite a grim global oil demand outlook by the International Energy Agency (IEA), OPEC and the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Brent crude had eased 23 cents to $105.70 a barrel by 0437 GMT, while U.S. oil dropped 24 cents to $97.60 a barrel.
The oil market was also cautious ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve meeting starting Tuesday. Investors are eyeing whether Chairman Ben Bernanke's media briefing will give more clarity on how and when the central bank will scale down its massive stimulus programme.
"The retreat in the U.S. dollar leading into the Fed meeting has given oil traders some impetus to push through resistance levels," said Sydney-based Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC Markets.
Brent faces a zone of technical resistance around $106.50-$106.70, Spooner said.
Reuters market analyst Wang Tao said U.S oil is slated to retreat back to $97.04 a barrel, while Brent is to remain in a neutral range of $105.34-$106.68 a barrel.
"As you can clearly see fundamentals are not supportive of the jump on Friday, the market will now need to see a catalyst like a supply disruption as a result of Middle East tensions, or a further weakening of the dollar for whatever reason," he added.
Syria will be a key talking point between U.S. President Barack Obama and Russia's Vladimir Putin on Monday, as both seek to find common ground in bringing Bashar al-Assad to the negotiating table to end the two-year civil war.
Late last week, Washington angered the Kremlin by authorising U.S. military support for the Syrian rebels opposed to Assad. Russian President Vladimir Putin called Assad's foes flesh eating cannibals.
Syria is not key to global oil supply, but investors are worried the civil war there could drag in other countries and plunge the whole region into conflict.
Investors are also watching to see if Iran's Hassan Rohani, who defeated hardline rivals in Iran's weekend presidential elections, will have any immediate impact in resolving a dispute with the United States over Tehran's nuclear ambitions that has led to Western sanctions squeezing its oil exports.
(Reporting by Luke Pachymuthu; Editing by Ed Davies and Joseph Radford)