Oil prices went in different directions in Asian transactions in Singapore on Wednesday after reaching the highest levels in months following release of positive housing data in the US.
Light crude New York contracts for March delivery retreated four cents to reach USD 97.53 per barrel (dpb) while Brent crude for March delivery put on one cent to reach USD 114.37.
After ending trade yesterday supported by strong housing data from the US, traders opted for selling today to cash in on gains made during recent previous sessions.
Sales of ready homes in the US retreated one percent in December compared to November 2012, reaching an annual rate of 4.94 million units, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Tuesday night.
Sales meanwhile went up 12.8 percent from last year, with analysts saying this shows the realty market as a good index to gauge recovery and performance of the US economy.
Markets are now waiting for the results of the Federal Reserve board's two-day meeting, awaiting data to help more closely assess the condition of the world's biggest economy and top energy consumer.