October crude oil prices traded higher during the early morning hours, supported by a rally in world equity markets, an improvement in risk attitudes and strength in Brent crude oil. It appears that talk that officials in Germany and France vowed to keep Greece in the Eurozone was viewed as a positive. This morning's gains in Brent crude oil seemed to come from concerns of more delayed loadings and lower than expected production at a key oilfield. The strength in Brent comes ahead of today's expiration of the October contract and the tight near term supply situation. EIA crude stocks fell by 6.704 million barrels last week, which was quite a bit more than expected. While that would normally spark a bullish reaction, the build in product inventories and sluggish demand readings detracted from the tone. The large draw widened the deficit compared to year ago levels to 10.981 million barrels. Crude stocks stand 21.289 million barrels above the five year average. Crude oil imports for the week stood at 8.542 million barrels per day compared to 8.537 million barrels the previous week. The refinery operating rate was 87.0%, down 2.0% from last week and compares to 87.6% last year.