Oil prices gave up gains in volatile trade on Tuesday on worries Iran and Iraq were not ready to agree on an OPEC output freeze after prices earlier rose to the highest level this month on reports cartel members had overcome their internal disputes.
Analysts said the market will remain sensitive to comments from officials attending a technical meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, who were trying to hammer out the details of an agreement before the formal meeting on Nov. 30.
Brent crude oil futures were up 25 cents a barrel at $49.15 by 2:35 p.m. ET (1935 GMT), having earlier risen $1 to $49.96 in a push to cross the $50 mark for the first time since the end of October.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures settled down 21 cents at $48.03 a barrel, down from a session high of $49.20.
The premium of U.S. futures for the second month over the front-month climbed to 91 cents, its highest since April, as OPEC rhetoric boosts later dated crude futures.