Both benchmarks rallied nearly 3 percent in the previous session, picking up momentum from a rebound late last week after WTI's fall to April lows beneath $40 a barrel.
"The oil market remains in a battle between the trading community which focuses in the shorter term data and information which has been mostly bearish, versus the investment trading crowd which is focused on the medium-to-longer term which is projected to be bullish," said Dominick Chirichella, senior partner at the Energy Management Institute in New York.
"Both WTI and Brent will have to move above the $50 per barrel level and remain there for the shorter-term traders to regain confidence that the market is embarking on a new up leg," Chirichella said.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is expected to report on Wednesday a 1.0 million-barrel crude stockpile drawdown for the week ended Aug. 5, after unexpected rises in two prior weeks, analysts polled by Reuters said.
The American Petroleum Institute (API), a trade group, will issue its own report on U.S. petroleum stockpiles after Tuesday's market settlement, at 4:30 p.m. EDT.