* World oil demand to grow faster than expected -EIA
* OPEC lifts view on 2013 world oil demand growth
* U.S. crude stocks seen up 2.4 mln barrels -Reuters poll
(Updates with API data paragraphs 11-15)
By Gabriel Debenedetti
NEW YORK, Feb 12 Oil prices rose on Tuesday
after the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said
world oil demand would increase faster than previously expected
in 2013 and OPEC raised its outlook for the amount of crude it
will need to pump this year.
The EIA increased its forecast for demand after the
12-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said
in its own monthly market report that world oil consumption
would expand quicker than previously thought.
"Overall, I would say the OPEC report is constructive and
mildly bullish based on the demand forecast," said Dominick
Chirichella, senior partner at Energy Management Institute in
Brent crude rose 53 cents to settle at $118.66 a
barrel, after finishing lower on Monday.
U.S. crude gained 48 cents to $97.51 a barrel.
The RBOB gasoline contract rebounded from Monday's
losses as the weekend blizzard in the U.S. Northeast caused less
damage than had been expected.
The EIA upped its forecast for oil demand by 110,000 barrels
per day to 1.05 million bpd in 2013, taking global demand to
90.2 million bpd this year.
Worries that Iran's nuclear program will prompt more
restrictions on that country's oil held investors' attention
more than North Korea's nuclear test.
Tensions eased somewhat on Tuesday when Iran acknowledged it
was converting some of its higher-grade enriched uranium into
reactor fuel, a move that could help prevent a dispute with the
West over its nuclear program hitting a crisis in mid-2013.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Monday the
new centrifuges Iran was installing for uranium enrichment could
cut by a third the time needed to create a nuclear bomb. Tehran
says its nuclear programme is for peaceful energy purposes.
U.S. OIL INVENTORIES
U.S. crude stocks fell 2.3 million barrels last week, the
American Petroleum Institute (API) reported on Tuesday.
Crude stocks at Cushing, Oklahoma, were off 1.1 million
barrels, while gasoline stocks fell 810,000 barrels and
distillate stocks dropped 1.1 million barrels, the API said.
Analysts had expected U.S. crude stocks to rise 2.4 million
barrels, according to a Reuters survey of analysts taken ahead
of weekly inventory reports from API and the EIA.
Gasoline stocks had been expected to rise 300,000 barrels
and distillate stocks were expected to drop 1.6 million barrels.
The EIA weekly inventory report is due on Wednesday at 10:30
a.m. EST (1530 GMT).
(Additional reporting by Peg Mackey in London and Osamu
Tsukimori in Tokyo; Editing by Dale Hudson, Alison Birrane and