Oil pumps are seen at sunset outside Vaudoy-en-Brie, near Paris, France April 23, 2018.
With China, India and Turkey already on board to continue Iranian oil imports, Japan also says it is considering continuing shipments amid warnings that new U.S. sanctions on Tehran could push prices above $90 a barrel.
Meanwhile, the Trump administration went ahead this week on its vow to reimpose sanctions on Iran. However, it is rumored to be new sanctions on Iran.
Sanctions that went into force on Tuesday target Iran's access to the USA dollar, its trade in gold and other precious metals, and other financial measures tied to the national currency, the rial.
Brent crude oil futures were up by 33 cents from their previous close at $73.54 a barrel by 1401 GMT, while USA futures gained 57 cents to trade at $69.06 barrel. The country exported nearly 3 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude in July.
"It is a reality check that this is happening and that Iran's oil exports will be hurt when the oil sanctions hit it in November", chief commodities analyst at Commerzbank Bjarne Schieldrop said. Analysts predicted a draw of 1.7 million barrels.
WTI faced further resistance, he said, amid a reported uptick in US imports of Saudi oil.
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President Donald Trump installed the first wave of sanctions Monday, targeting Iran's financial, automotive, aviation and metals sectors and threatening that the second wave will "ratchet up to yet another level" in November.
"Anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States". Ultimately, I think this market will continue to be very noisy, as the geopolitical issues continue to push oil markets around.
Energy prices are firm still on the reports that Saudi Arabian crude output unexpectedly fell in July.
Saudi Arabia's crude production dropped about 200,000 bpd last month, two sources at the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said on Friday, despite a pledge by the Saudis and top producer Russian Federation to raise output from July, with Saudi Arabia promising a "measurable" supply boost.
The new United States sanctions will likely slash oil supply.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration report on crude oil inventories is due to be released on Wednesday at 10:30a.m. EDT.
"Without the extra Saudi oil we had in June, it's hard to crunch the numbers and get a lower price going into the end of the year", said John Kilduff of Again Capital.