SINGAPORE (APP/AFP):Oil prices were mixed in Asia Wednesday as dealers await the US Federal Reserve’s latest policy statement while also tracking ongoing violence in crude producer Iraq.US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for July delivery gained five cents to $106.41, while Brent crude for August eased 34 cents to $113.11 in afternoon trade. Singapore’s United Overseas Bank said trading “will be dominated” by the Fed’s formal policy statement to be released later Wednesday.
The US central bank is largely expected to maintain its current policy of keeping federal funds rate at zero, and steadily cutting back its stimulus programme. French bank Credit Agricole said investors will focus on the Fed’s projections for US economic growth, unemployment, inflation and the expected timing of any interest rate increase.
Investors meanwhile remain jittery over the unabated sectarian violence in Iraq.
Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Tuesday fired several top security
commanders in a major shake-up of security forces, as fighting approached Baghdad in a jihadist-led insurgency the UN has warned could break up the country.