NEW YORK, April 18 (Xinhua) -- Crude prices fell on Wednesday as U. S. crude inventories rose for the fourth straight week.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) said that U.S. crude stocks rose 3.9 million barrels in the week ended April 13, far beyond analysts' expectation. In four weeks, U.S. crude stocks had risen nearly 22.8 million barrels, the biggest four-week increase in more than three years.
The EIA weekly report also showed that U.S. oil demand dropped 2.7 percent and gasoline demand fell 2.8 percent, compared with a year earlier. But the gasoline inventories decreased 3.7 million barrels and distillate stockpiles fell 2.9 million barrels, which were also larger than expected.
Light, sweet crude for May delivery dropped 1.53 dollars, or 1. 47 percent to settle at 102.67 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In London, Brent crude for June delivery also slipped and last traded below 118 dollars a barrel.