Oil prices rise as U.S. inventories tumble


NEW YORK, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- Oil prices climbed on Wednesday after data showed a marked drop in U.S. crude stockpiles.

The West Texas Intermediate for September delivery added 1.58 U.S. dollars, or 1.8 percent, to settle at 88.11 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude for October delivery increased 1.31 dollars, or 1.4 percent, to close at 93.65 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported Wednesday that the nation's crude oil inventories decreased by 7.1 million barrels during the week ending Aug. 12. Analysts polled by S&P Global Commodity Insights had expected a fall of 1.7 million barrels in U.S. crude stocks.

The EIA publication also showed that total motor gasoline inventories fell by 4.6 million barrels last week, while distillate fuel inventories increased by 0.8 million barrels.

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