Oil extends gains as geopolitical tensions intensify
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Oil prices extended gains in early Asian trade on Wednesday, with Russia warning against cutting gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria, while hopes of Chinese economic stimulus boosted oil demand expectations.
Brent crude futures rose $0.44, or 0.42 percent, to $105.43 a barrel by 04:38 GMT, and US West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose $0.21, or 0.20%, to $101.95 a barrel.
Crude oil prices settled up about 3% on Tuesday in choppy trading as the market fluctuates between supply and demand concerns over Russian oil and gas disruptions and deteriorating global economic prospects.
Russia's Gazprom told Poland and Bulgaria it would halt gas supplies from Wednesday over non-payment of supplied gas in Russian rubles, in a major escalation of the wider dispute between Russia and the West over its invasion of Ukraine.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned Tuesday that Asia faces "stagflationary" expectations with the Ukraine war, higher commodity prices and a slowdown in China creating great uncertainty.