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  • The United States wants to limit Iran’s oil exports.
  • Weekly API stock report will be released later in the session.
  • WTI advances above $70 for the first time in a month.

Crude oil prices gathered strength in the last hour with the barrel of West Texas Intermediate rallying above the $70 mark to refresh its highest level since May 25 at $70.62. As of writing, the barrel of WTI was trading at $70.47, adding $2.4, or 3.5%, on the day.

According to Reuters, a senior State Department official said that the United States was planning to encourage countries to stop importing oil from Iran from November.  “We’re going to isolate streams of Iranian funding and looking to highlight the totality of Iran’s malign behavior across the region,” the official, who didn’t want to reveal his/her identity, told reporters.

On the other hand,  Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al Abadi said that a price collapse could be witnessed if oil prices rose above their current levels. However, the market remained focused on the potential impact of Iran’s supply falling toward the end of the year.  

Later in the day, the API is going to publish its weekly crude oil stock report. Last week, the API showed a surprise 3 million barrels decrease in the U.S. stocks and another negative reading could help the barrel of WTI add to its gains in the post-settlement trade hours.