Oil prices edge higher before US data

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Oil prices rose slightly on Friday as traders awaited economic data out of the United States, the world's biggest energy consumer.

New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in November, climbed 24 cents to 75.42 dollars a barrel.

Brent North Sea crude for November delivery gained 11 cents to 78.22 dollars.

Prices fell earlier Friday in Asian trade on worries over weak energy demand due to the faltering US economic recovery, analysts said.

"Today, investors will be keeping an eye on the US durable goods orders for August, as well as new home sales data, for further clues (on) the US economy that might also affect oil prices and provide some direction," said Sucden Financial analyst Myrto Sokou.

"The current economic conditions remain fairly volatile and the oil market is struggling for some direction. However, crude oil prices remain fairly strong."

© 2010 AFP

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