Crude prices rose Tuesday despite dim economic data as U.S. stocks rallied from a 12 year low.
A report from the Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller showed home prices tumbled by the sharpest annual rate on record in the fourth quarter and in December. Prices are now at levels not seen since the third quarter of 2003.
The New York-based Conference Board said Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index, which was down slightly in January, plummeted more than 12 points in February to 25, from the revised 37.4 last month.
However, Wall Street rallied Tuesday after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke signaled that nationalization of major banks was not at hand.
Light, sweet crude for April delivery was 1.52 U.S. dollars to settle at 39.96 dollars on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Brent prices rose 1.51 dollars to settle at 42.50 dollars on the ICE Futures exchange in London.