Oil market rises awaiting US stimulus clues

11th February 2014, Comments 0 comments

World oil prices rose Tuesday on hopes that new Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen will indicate that she is sticking by the US central bank's easy-money stimulus, dealers said.

Brent North Sea crude for delivery in March added 42 cents to stand at $109.05 a barrel in midday deals.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for March, climbed 24 cents to $100.30 a barrel.

Analysts said investors were waiting for testimony in Congress from Yellen, who has replaced Ben Bernanke as chair of the US central bank.

Yellen will brief legislators on the state of the US economy and the direction of monetary policy.

"Brent crude edged toward $109 a barrel on cautious optimism that the Federal Reserve's new head will signal the central bank's commodity-friendly monetary policy is to remain for now," said analysts at financial services firm Investec.

The health of the US economy is a key influence on oil prices, with the United States being the world's biggest consumer of crude.

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© 2014 AFP

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