London - Brent crude rose to 116 dollars a barrel on Thursday, as traders await a U.S. Federal Reserve policy decision that was expected to include further stimulus action to bolster the world's largest economy.
Pressure on oil prices from an unexpected rise in U.S. crude stockpiles was offset by geopolitical risks in OPEC member Libya and rising hopes that the euro zone's rescue fund would soon take effect.
Brent's front-month October contract, which would expire at the end of Thursday's session, rose 14 cents to 116.10 dollars a barrel, adding to a 56-cent gain the previous session.
U.S. crude edged up three cents to 97.04 dollars a barrel.
"There will likely be a boost in oil futures if indeed the Fed goes ahead with further quantitative easing," said Victor Shum, a senior partner at oil consultancy-- Purvin & Gertz-- in Singapore.
"We also have this killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya yesterday adding a bit of geopolitical risk to the mix," he added.
The Fed ends its two-day meeting later on Thursday with the policy result expected to be released, followed by Chairman Ben Bernanke's news conference about two hours later.
A Media poll showed economists raised their bets of a third round of Fed bond buying, known as quantitative easing, to 65 per cent from 60 per cent in August.
Oil found support from violent anti-U.S. protests in Libya and Egypt, sparked by a film that attackers said insulted the Prophet Mohammad.