Oil rises on positive U.S. data

17:09, April 16, 2011      

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Crude prices rose on Friday as positive U.S. economic data eased concerns about the recovery in the largest oil consuming country.

Although U.S. March CPI rose 0.5 percent, indicating rising inflation pressure driven by soaring fuel and food prices, consumer sentiment climbed unexpectedly. The Michigan consumer sentiment index for April rose to 69.6 from 68.2 in March, better than expectation. Analysts thought this showed that consumer spending, the engine for the U.S. economy, remained not affected by high gasoline prices.

Meanwhile, the manufacturing sector continues to fuel U.S. recovery. The Federal Reserve said on Friday, overall industrial production in March jumped 0.8 percent, following a revised 0.1 percent up-tick the month before. Analysts had forecast a 0.6 percent increase. Strong auto output lifted manufacturing for the third straight month with a 3.0 percent gain. Markets saw few near- term risks to the industrial recovery.

China's gross domestic product grew by 9.7 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, off the 9.8 percent growth rate in the last quarter of 2010, but ahead of the 9.5 percent pace that analysts had expected.

This week, concerns about high fuel prices would hurt world economic recovery and worldwide oil demand knocked crude prices off the 30-month highs.

Light, sweet crude for May delivery gained 1.55 dollars, or 1. 43 percent to settle at 109.66 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, ending this week with 2.8 percent loss. In London, Brent crude for June delivery rose 1.45 dollars to settle at 123.45 dollars a barrel, registering a 2.5 percent drop for the whole week.

Source: Xinhua

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