* Dollar strengthens, euro falls
* U.S. crude stockpiles forecast to rise 1 mln bbls - poll
* Coming Up: API weekly oil inventories data at 2030 GMT
(Updates prices, adds comment, detail; paragraphs 1, 5-7, 19)
By Alice Baghdjian
LONDON, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Brent crude oil held above $114 abarrel and close to a three-week high on Wednesday as worriesover the security of Middle East supplies outweighed increasingevidence of slowing global economic growth.
Weak risk sentiment coursed through financial markets,pulling down stock markets and boosting the dollar after theInternational Monetary Fund said a deepening euro zone debtcrisis was threatening the global economy.
The IMF said in its semi-annual check on the world'sfinancial health that risks to global financial stability hadrisen in the past six months, leaving confidence "very fragile."
But shelling along the Turkey-Syria border, hostilitybetween Iran and the West, and an impending Israeli election,have raised worries over the risks to oil supplies from theMiddle East Gulf, keeping a floor under prices.
Brent crude fell 27 cents a barrel to $114.23 by1245 GMT, after hitting its highest for three weeks earlier inthe session. U.S. crude fell 40 cents to $91.99 a barrel.
"It's not that Syria and Turkey are significant oilexporters but Iraqi crude from the northern part of Iraq(Kirkuk) flows via pipeline thorough Turkey to Ceyhan," saidDominick Chirichella, an energy analyst at New York's EnergyManagement Institute.
"In addition if the Syrian civil war spreads furtherthroughout the Middle East it is only going to result in anotherlevel of instability in a region that is very unstable and aregion that exports the largest amount of oil to the consumingworld countries," Chirichella added.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called an earlyelection on Tuesday, eager to strengthen his political positionahead of any military action against Iran.
"The nuclear dispute with Iran is going to be an electionissue in Israel, and this might cause the price to rise incoming weeks, or at least support it," said Carsten Fritsch, oilanalyst at Commerzbank in Frankfurt.
"Other factors are playing a hand in this, such as thetensions between Turkey and Syria," Fritsch added.
<^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Graphic on WTI-Brent spread: Graphic of 24-hr chart Brent analysis: ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^> CHINA
Global economic gloom, meanwhile, has put a dampener on manymarkets. China's annual economic growth probably slowed for aseventh straight quarter in the July-September period to itsweakest level since the depths of the global financial crisis, aReuters poll showed.
On Tuesday the IMF said that the global economic slowdownwas worsening and cut its growth forecasts for the second timesince April, warning U.S. and European policymakers that failureto fix their economic ills would prolong the slump.
The IMF forecast global output in 2012 would grow by only3.3 percent, down from a July estimate of 3.5 percent.
OPEC trimmed its forecast for world oil demand growth in2013 on Wednesday due to a slowing global economy and said itexpected a trend for ample supply to persist.
"There is no shortage of supply needing to be offset byadditional oil at the moment," Fritsch said. "Indeed, it israther the supply risks and the ultra-loose monetary policypursued by central banks that are driving the price upwards."
Investors were looking to weekly data on oil inventoriesfrom the United States, due this week, for hints on demand atthe top oil consumer. Analysts forecast a 1 million barrel buildin crude stocks in the week to Oct. 5.
Industry data from the American Petroleum Institute will bereleased at 2030 GMT on Wednesday and figures from the U.S.government's Department of Energy will follow on Thursday, bothsets of figures delayed a day by the U.S. Columbus Day holiday.
(Additional reporting by Florance Tan in Singapore; editing byChristopher Johnson and William Hardy)
Keywords: MARKETS OIL/