Reuters: Oil prices rebound on weaker dollar, supportive China manufacturing data

Oil prices rose in Asian trade on Thursday as the U.S. dollar weakened, rebounding from a more than 3% drop in the previous session following surprisingly large builds in U.S. crude and distillate stockpiles last week, Reuters reported.

An unexpected boost in China`s manufacturing sector also lent support to oil prices after official data on Thursday showed a modest gain in manufacturing activity in August, according to Reuters. 

The dollar wavered against the yen and the euro on Thursday, its recent gains stalling before Friday`s non-farm payroll report in the United States. A weaker dollar makes greenback-denominated commodities, including oil, cheaper for holders of other currencies.

Brent crude futures had climbed 18 cents to $47.07 a barrel as of 0652 GMT after settling $1.33 lower, or 2.8%, at the previous close, according to the report.

U.S. crude futures rose 24 cents to $44.94 a barrel, after falling $1.65, or 3.6%, in the previous session.

That came after U.S. crude inventories rose 2.3 million barrels to 525.9 million barrels in the week to Aug. 26, data from the Department of Energy`s Energy Information Administration showed on Wednesday. That compared with analyst expectations of a 921,000-barrel increase, Reuters wrote.

Speculation the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other oil producers might agree to curb output at talks in Algeria later this month helped fuel an 11 percent rise in crude prices in August, the best monthly return since April.

But optimism of an output freeze has since waned.

”The market doesn`t believe OPEC has the ability to achieve an agreement freezing supply,” said Jonathan Barratt, chief investment officer at Sydney`s Ayers Alliance, according to the report. 

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