Oil prices slipped on Thursday, pressured by larger-than-expected product inventories in the United States and some profit-taking after a recent run-up in oil benchmarks.
Ongoing tension in the Middle East has kept a bid under the market, however, as reduced flows from the Iraqi Kurdish pipeline through Turkey have raised worries about supply.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude ended Thursday's session down 75 cents, or 1.4 percent, at $51.29 per barrel. Brent crude futures were down 84 cents, or 1.4 percent, at $57.31 by 2:11 p.m. ET (1811 GMT). from Wednesday's mid-week high of $58.15 a barrel.
Analysts said they have seen some profit-taking after two weeks of gains as upward momentum in prices appears to be waning. Energy equities were also weaker, falling to three-and-a-half week lows.
"There seems to be a macro selloff across the board with energy stocks also coming down," said John Kilduff, partner at Again Capital LLC.