UPDATE 1-Brent holds above $106, all eyes on Fed
* Global markets await Fed statement
* Fed could stem asset purchase programme in H2 -poll
* Syria peace conference unlikely before Aug -source
* Coming up: U.S. EIA weekly oil stocks at 1430 GMT
(Adds comment, updates prices)
SINGAPORE, June 19 (Reuters) - Brent crude futures held above $106 a barrel on Wednesday as investors looked to a Federal Reserve meeting for clues on the outlook for a U.S. stimulus programme that has underpinned commodity prices.
Global investors have been on edge since Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke suggested the central bank could be looking to roll back monetary stimulus, and a statement at the end of the policy meeting on Wednesday may provide a timeline.
Brent futures for August delivery had gained 13 cents to $106.15 a barrel by 0522 GMT. U.S. crude for July delivery increased by 16 cents to $98.60.
Analysts expect the Fed to start tapering its bond-buying programme in the second half of this year, a Reuters poll showed.
Some said the central bank would be wary of surprising markets.
"The Fed does not want the market to be confused or become volatile," said Ken Hasegawa, a commodity sales manager at Newedge Japan. "The oil market might hold steady, as it is doing now."
Oil touched an 11-week high earlier this week, buoyed by fears of supply disruption if other Middle Eastern nations were drawn into the Syrian conflict.
Heavy fighting was reported in Aleppo, Syria's biggest city, on Tuesday, but an international peace conference on Syria is unlikely to be held before August due to differences between Russia and the West, a source at a meeting of Group of Eight leaders said.
"Unless there is a significant increase in the likelihood that other oil-producing countries in the region will be drawn into the conflict, rallies on news-flow surrounding this issue will fade," Marc Ground, an analyst at Standard Bank, said in a note.
Investors were also expecting fuel demand to pick up in the second half of the year after global economic recovery slowed in the first half.
"Technically Brent succeeded in rising above $105 and it will possibly try to go above $110," Hasegawa said, although he noted that the oil market is still in slight oversupply as the global economy is not recovering as fast as expected.
In the United States, commercial crude oil stocks fell around 4 million barrels last week, data from the American Petroleum Institute showed late on Tuesday. That was more than the 500,000 barrel drop that analysts had expected in a Reuters poll. The U.S. Energy Information Administration releases its weekly data on Wednesday.
U.S. crude futures, which touched a nine-month high earlier this week, were supported by improving U.S. economic data and further gains in equities although they still face resistance at $100 a barrel, ANZ analysts said in a note.
(Reporting by Florence Tan; Editing by Joseph Radford)