FILE PHOTO: A seagull flies in front of an oil platform in the Bouri Oilfield some 70 nautical miles north of the coast of Libya, October 5, 2017. REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi/File Photo
SYDNEY (Reuters) – Oil prices edged down on Thursday despite a surprise decline in U.S. inventories, with international benchmark Brent retreating from a five-month high touched in the previous session.
Brent crude futures were at $71.51 a barrel at 0056 GMT, down 11 cents, or 0.2 percent, from their last close. Brent fell 0.1 percent on Wednesday, after earlier touching its highest since Nov. 8 at $72.27 a barrel.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $63.67 per barrel, down 9 cents, or 0.1 percent, from their previous settlement. WTI closed the last session down 0.5 percent.
“Prices are soft despite a surprise drawdown in U.S. inventories,” ANZ Bank said in a research note.
U.S. crude inventories fell by 1.4 million barrels in the week to April 12, compared with analyst expectations for an increase of 1.7 million barrels.
Net U.S. crude imports last week dropped by 659,000 barrels per day (bpd).
Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Joseph Radford