Oil prices pushed higher on Thursday for a third day in a row, as fears of supply disruptions amid heightened tensions in the Middle East overshadowed an unexpected rise in U.S. inventories.
Brent crude futures were at $72.18 a barrel at 0612 GMT, up 41 cents, or 0.6%, from their last close. Brent closed up 0.7% on Wednesday.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $62.40 per barrel, up 38 cents, or 0.6%, from their previous settlement. WTI closed up 0.4% in the last session.
Analysts said oil was drawing support from the risk of conflict in the Middle East, with helicopters carrying U.S. staff from the American embassy in Baghdad on Wednesday out of apparent concern about perceived threats from Iran.