Oil prices bounced back on Wednesday, with U.S. crude topping $65 a barrel for the first time in more than three yeas, as government data showing a drop in U.S. crude oil stockpiles contradicted an earlier industry report that indicated inventory levels rose.
Brent futures were up 4 cents to $70 a barrel by 10:39 a.m. ET (1539 GMT), after climbing above $70 this month for first time since 2014. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures were up 60 cents, or 1 percent, at $65.07 a barrel, the highest level since Dec. 8, 2014.
U.S. commercial crude inventories dropped by 1.1 million barrels a day in the week through Jan. 19, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, compared with analyst expectations for a decrease of 1.6 million barrels.
The American Petroleum Institute, and industry group, had said on Tuesday that inventories rose by 4.8 million barrels, after nine weeks of drawdowns.
Gasoline stocks rose by 3.1 million barrels, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.5 million-barrel gain. Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, rose by 639,000 barrels, versus expectations for a 1.5 million-barrel drop, the EIA data showed.