Oil nearly US$106 after China recovery signs
By Pamela Sampson, APBANGKOK--The price of oil rose slightly Monday after improved Chinese economic data last week suggested demand for crude might increase.
August 13, 2013, 12:05 am TWN
Benchmark oil for September delivery was up 2 cents to US$105.99 a barrel at late afternoon Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract gained US$2.57, or 2.5 percent, to close at US$105.97 on Friday.
“I think we're seeing a bit of upward momentum from China,” said Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney. China said Friday that its factory output and auto sales accelerated in July.
Spooner also said traders were looking ahead to Thursday, when the U.S. government releases inflation figures for July.
The U.S. Federal Reserve has a target of 2 percent for inflation. The fact that inflation is falling below that target has prompted some Fed officials to be concerned about a potential bout of deflation, which could be harmful to economic growth.
Lower-than-anticipated inflation could cause the Fed to delay the scaling back of its stimulus program, which was launched more than four years ago to help the world's biggest economy weather the fallout from the global financial crisis.
In other energy futures trading on Nymex:
— Heating oil rose 0.1 cent to US$2.995 a gallon.
— Natural gas rose 2.8 cents to US$3.258 per 1,000 cubic feet.
— Wholesale gasoline fell 0.9 cent to US$2.899 a gallon.