HONG KONG – Oil prices rose in Asian trade on Friday after China posted lower-than-expected inflation and as traders await a flurry of other data from the world’s second-biggest economy including industrial output.
New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate for delivery in September, rose 83 cents to $104.23 a barrel in morning Asian trade and Brent North Sea crude for September gained 37 cents to $107.05.
China’s annual inflation held steady at 2.7 percent in July, according to government data, marginally below market expectations of 2.8 percent, potentially giving the government more room to stimulate the economy.
Traders were also eyeing industrial output and retail sales figures from China due to be released later in the day.
“There have not been really significant moves but there has been a bit of trader positioning in advance of the numbers,” Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney, told AFP.
“We could see some ongoing upward momentum in commodities and risks” if Chinese industrial numbers are better than expected, he said.