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Crude Oil Climbs as China’s Manufacturing Expands

April 2, 2012 at 23:00 by Vladimir Vyun

Crude oil jumped today as manufacturing in China expanded last month. A government report showed that China’s manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index climbed from 51.0 in February to 53.1 in March, while decline was expected. The HSBC report totally opposed the government data, showing a decline of manufacturing, but it looks like traders haven’t paid attention to the unfavorable signs. China is the second largest consumer of crude oil in the world.

Prices are under a downside pressure, though, as global production is picking up. Oil companies increased their production by 110,000 barrels (0.4 percent) to the average 31.22 million barrels per day in March from 31.11 million in February. Output in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries climbed last month to the highest level in more than three years. The main contributor to the increase was Libya.

May futures for delivery of crude oil rose $0.56 to $103.58 per barrel in electronic trading on NYMEX before trading at $103.12. Brent climbed from $122.96 to $125.51 as of 22:44 GMT on ICE today.

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