Crude futures edged up in early Asian trading on Thursday following heavy losses in the previous session after official data showed that U.S. inventories rose for the first time in 10 weeks, reawakening concerns over a glut.
U.S. crude futures CLc1 were up 24 cents, or 0.5 percent, at $45.98 a barrel at 0026 GMT. On Wednesday. They closed down 5 percent, or $2.47 a barrel, in the previous session to the lowest settlement since May 4.
Brent crude prices LCOc1 were 29 cents, or 0.6 percent, higher at a $48.35 a barrel, having fallen 4 percent in the previous session, also the lowest since May 4.
U.S. stocks of crude oil and gasoline surprisingly rose last week as refinery runs declined and exports fell, official data showed on Wednesday.
Crude inventories USOILC=ECI rose by 3.3 million barrels in the week ended June 2, compared with expectations for a decrease of 3.5 million barrels, the Energy Information Administration said.
It was the first such increase in 10 weeks and came as refineries eased off on record processing levels that had reached a week earlier. U.S. refiners are still producing at a very high rate.
The data surprised analysts and undercut a growing view that inventories were finally showing steady progress toward drawing down to seasonal averages.topics from