Singapore - Oil prices were higher in Asian trade on Wednesday, on expectations of firm US economic growth and rising tensions between the West and Iran, analysts said.
New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate crude for delivery in March, gained 10 cents to $99.05 a barrel in the afternoon.
Brent North Sea crude for March delivery was up 41c to $110.44.
"Crude prices in Asian trade are being supported by news that US economic growth was steady in the fourth quarter of 2011," said Victor Shum, senior principal at Purvin and Gertz international energy consultants in Singapore.
"The tension in Iran is also affecting prices," he said.
The US Commerce Department will release official gross domestic product figures on Friday, but analysts expect the world's biggest economy to have grown by 3.0% in the last quarter of 2011, the fastest pace in 18 months.
Tensions between Iran and the West were also supporting oil prices, analysts said.
Tehran on Tuesday summoned the Danish envoy, whose nation currently holds the rotating presidency of the European Union, to protest against the 27-nation bloc's move to impose an embargo on Iranian oil exports.
According to official media, the Iranian deputy foreign minister in charge of Europe and American affairs, Ali Asghar Khaji, expressed Tehran's "strong protest to this illogical decision" in his meeting with the Danish diplomat.
The Islamic republic, which is already under four rounds of UN sanctions, vehemently denies its nuclear programme masks an atomic weapons drive as the West alleges, and insists it is for civilian purposes only.
Crude producer Iran had previously threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz - a chokepoint for one-fifth of the world's traded oil - in the event of a military strike or sanctions from the West over its nuclear programme.