US Light oil price starts the week trading higher near the $85 a barrel mark, helped by a falling US dollar and bullish data that showed China crude oil imports jumping to their second highest monthly level on record. US Light crude oil futures are currently trading at $85.22 a barrel, many analysts expect oil prices to hold or gain later this week.
“The weaker US dollar and positive Chinese trade data are the two main supporting factors,” said David Moore, an analyst at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
Crude oil imports by China jumped 13.8 per cent from the previous month and reached 4.95 million barrels a day, preliminary data released by the General Administration of Customs showed on April 10th 2010. The Chinese March 2010 oil import levels were just a touch below the December 2010 record 20.9 million tonnes.
Separately, money managers extended net crude oil long positions on the NYMEX to a record 186,732 in the week to April 6, up from 169,478 in the previous week, the CFTC had said on Friday last week.
Looking ahead, oil traders were expected to keep a close eye on the Chinese yuan, US dollar relationship. China has pegged the yuan near 6.83 per dollar since the middle of 2008 to help its exporters weather the global crisis.