Crude oil prices started higher on Wednesday ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve meeting where the central bank is expected to keep its benchmark interest rate unchanged.
Brent crude traded at $61.39 per barrel at 0645GMT with a 0.4 percent gain after closing Tuesday at $61.14 a barrel.
American West Texas Intermediate was at $53.44 a barrel at the same time, up 0.2 percent, after ending the previous session at $53.33 per barrel.
U.S. financial markets company CME Group's FedWatch Tool, which measures expectations for a rate hike by the Fed, gives the possibility of 100 percent that the central bank will not increase its benchmark interest rate at the conclusion of its two-day January meeting starting at 1900GMT on Wednesday.
As the markets price in the Fed decision, the American dollar has been in decline against other major currencies.
The U.S. dollar index, which includes a basket of currencies like the euro, Japanese yen, British pound, Canadian dollar, Swedish krona and Swiss franc, was down 0.13 percent at 0645GMT.
The greenback was also down by more than 0.3 percent against the Chinese yuan at that time.
A decline in the American dollar, to which crude oil prices are indexed, encourages oil demand globally, which in turn pushes crude prices higher.
By Ovunc Kutlu