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Oil prices higher with more volatile trading

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Oil prices were higher today after yet more volatile trading, as dealers reacted to further evidence of a supply glut and hints at possible action to reverse the market slide.

At about 1200 GMT, US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery in March was up 11 cents at USD 32.41 a barrel.

Brent North Sea crude for March grew 36 cents compared with Wednesday’s close to stand at USD 33.46.

Prices slid in earlier Asian trading hours, a day after official data revealed that US commercial crude stockpiles had climbed to a record level, further stoking worries about global oversupplies.

But in what has been an extremely volatile week’s trading, oil futures have enjoyed strong gains on hopes of stimulus measures in the eurozone and Japan.

Additional support for prices has come from market talk of a possible meeting of OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers, notably Saudi Arabia and Russia, aimed at limiting supplies of crude to help support a price recovery.

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