By Eric Yep

Crude-oil futures were slightly higher in Asian trading hours Wednesday but were unable to recover most of the losses from the previous trading session.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in September traded at $97.49 a barrel at 0513 GMT, up $0.11 in the Globex electronic session. September Brent crude on London's ICE Futures exchange rose $0.20 to $104.81 a barrel.

Nymex crude lost 91 cents per barrel in overnight trade and has been down for eight of the past 11 sessions, while Brent crude lost 80 cents overnight and has settled lower for four of the past five trading sessions.

The U.S. oil benchmark was supported by expectations of another drop in weekly oil stockpiles. Late Tuesday, the American Petroleum Institute said its data indicated a 5.5-million-barrel draw in crude supplies in the week ended Aug. 1.

The more closely watched inventory report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration is due later Wednesday and analysts expect oil stocks to have fallen by 1.7 million barrels, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal.

If the EIA confirms that the drawdown in stockpiles is as much as indicated by the API, it will push prices higher, analyst Tim Evans at Citi Futures said.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered his government to prepare retaliatory measures against the U.S. and European sanctions that were imposed last week, even as Kiev continues to battle rebels in eastern Ukraine.

On Friday, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is scheduled to publish its monthly oil market report.

Nymex reformulated gasoline blendstock for September--the benchmark gasoline contract--rose 180 points to $2.7335 a gallon, while September heating oil traded at $2.8539, 70 points higher.

ICE gasoil for August changed hands at $874.25 a metric ton, up $4.75 from Tuesday's settlement.

Write to Eric Yep at eric.yep@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 06, 2014 02:34 ET (06:34 GMT)

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