Crude oil futures retreated from overnight highs, spurred by signs of a thaw in US-China tensions, during mid-morning trade in Asia Wednesday on profit-taking following the release of a bearish report of last week's US crude inventory.
At 11:25 am in Singapore (0325 GMT), ICE Brent October futures was down 57 cents/b (0.93%) from Tuesday's settle at $60.73/b, while the front-month NYMEX September light sweet crude futures contract was 66 cents/b (1.16%) lower at $56.44/b.
Meanwhile, a bearish report on US crude inventories later Tuesday had put a stop to the rise in international crude markers and overturned the more than $2/b overnight gain, analysts said.
According to analyst reports quoting data released by the American Petroleum Institute released Tuesday, US crude inventories were up 3.7 million barrels for the week ended August 9.
On Monday, analysts surveyed by S&P Global Platts were looking for US crude stocks to have declined by 2.7 million barrels for the same period.
"The API crude report is either a surprise or it is playing catch up," Price Futures Group's senior market analyst Phil Flynn said, adding that the API numbers look like they are fixing for a 3 million plus barrels drop in crude inventories over the past three weeks.
The API report was mixed on product inventories with US gasoline inventories up 3.7 million barrels and US distillate inventories down 1.3 million for the period ended August 9.
Market participants will be looking for definitive numbers on last week's US inventory data from the US Energy Information Administration due for release later Wednesday.
As of 0325 GMT, the US Dollar Index was down 0.09% at 97.605.