LONDON (AFP) - World oil prices fell on Thursday as the dollar strengthened and the market awaited the latest weekly snapshot of energy inventories in the United States. New Yorks main futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in March, fell 70 cents to 76.63 dollars a barrel. Brent North Sea crude for April delivery dropped 82 cents to 75.45 dollars a barrel. The dollar rose against the euro Thursday on concerns the Greek debt crisis could affect other eurozone nations and on expectations that the Federal Reserve may tighten monetary policy sooner than thought, analysts said. A stronger greenback makes dollar-priced crude more expensive for buyers using weaker currencies, hitting demand. Thursdays drop in prices contrasts with a 3.0-dollar surge for oil futures on Tuesday following a rise for the European single currency. The market was awaiting oil inventory data from the US Department of Energy, which was being published one day later than usual after a public holiday in the US last Monday. The DoE weekly data on stockpiles of crude, gasoline and distillates is closely followed since the United States is the worlds biggest energy consuming nation. Analysts are expecting the data to reveal a jump in crude and gasoline stocks and a drop in distillates, which include heating fuel. Northern parts of the US experienced extremely cold weather conditions last week, which is likely to have pushed up demand for heating fuel. Colder conditions will, in our view, help improve heating demand and reduce distillate inventories, said VTB Capital oil market analyst Andrey Kryuchenkov. Traders were also keeping a watch over oil-rich Iran, where renewed tensions over the countrys nuclear drive has helped to boost crude prices this week. Iran recently began enriching uranium to 20 percent purity, which the United States and several other powers said added to evidence that the Islamic republic is seeking to build a nuclear weapon. Tehran denies the charge, insisting its goal is peaceful nuclear energy and research. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said her country had no plan for military action against Iran, while Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Washington has not ruled out military action.