NYMEX-U.S. crude climbs above $94 on cold weather, Libya supply
SINGAPORE, Jan 8 (Reuters) - U.S. oil futures rose for the second day in early Asian trading, supported by frigid weather in North America that is hurting some refinery operations and new worries over Libyan supplies, although a stronger dollar is likely to cap gains.
Investors will be closely looking at the minutes of the Federal Reserve's December policy meeting due on Wednesday.
* U.S crude for February delivery was up 36 cents at $94.03 per barrel by 0031 GMT, after settling up just over a quarter of a percent on Tuesday.
* Frigid weather rattled several U.S. refiners on Tuesday, shutting down units at Marathon Petroleum Corp's Detroit refinery a day after extreme weather caused an equipment failure at Exxon Mobil Corp's plant in Joliet, Illinois.
* A pro-autonomy group in eastern Libya is inviting foreign companies to buy oil from ports it had seized bypassing the central government, escalating a conflict with Tripoli.
The move comes after Libya's navy on Monday said it had fired shots at a Malta-flagged tanker which it said had tried to load oil at the eastern Es-Sider port which has been seized by the pro-autonomy group.
* Production at Libya's El-Sharara oilfield rose to 277,000 barrels per day (bpd) on Tuesday, with full output capacity of 340,000 bpd expected by Wednesday, an official at the state-run National Oil Corp. said.
* U.S. commercial crude oil inventories likely fell 900,000 last week, falling for the sixth straight time and extending a near record decline in stockpiles, an extended Reuters poll of analysts showed on Tuesday.
Data from the American Petroleum Institute (API) released late on Tuesday showed a much larger 7.3 million-barrel drop in crude oil stocks, and also bigger builds in fuel inventories of more than 5 million barrels. It also showed a rise in stocks at the Cushing delivery hub.
* The pace of U.S. oil production growth will begin to slow in 2015, even as global demand continues to rise, allowing OPEC to pump more crude for the first time in three years, U.S. government forecasts showed on Tuesday.
* The top Republican on the Senate Energy Committee, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, on Tuesday urged an end to a decades-old U.S. ban on exporting crude oil, saying it will disrupt supply and discourage U.S. production rather than keep domestic gasoline prices stable.
* Fighting in South Sudan, which has disrupted some of the country's oil supply, looked set to continue after the government rejected rebel calls for an immediate release of detainees.
The two sides met briefly for the first time on Tuesday seeking to end fighting that has left the world's newest state on the brink of civil war.
* Asian shares should benefit from improving risk appetite on Wednesday after strong trade data boosted expectations for U.S. growth while a lessening of sovereign strains in Europe lifted stocks there to the highest since 2008. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.14 percent.
* The dollar got a boost from the U.S. trade numbers and climbed as far as 80.946 against a basket of currencies, reaching highs last seen in early December.
* The following data is expected on Wednesday:
N/A - Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee meeting
0700 - German Trade data for November
0900 - Italian unemployment for November
1000 - Euro zone retail sales for November
1000 - Euro zone unemployment for November
1100 - German industrial orders for November
1530 - U.S. EIA weekly petroleum status report
1900 - Federal Open Market Committee releases the Minutes of December meeting.
(Reporting By Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; Editing by Supriya Kurane)