Brent crude rose for a second day on speculation stronger economic growth in China will boost demand from the world’s second-biggest oil consumer.
Futures approached $85 a barrel before paring gains. Chinese exports rose more than expected in October, data from the customs administration showed on Nov. 8. The country’s crude-oil imports jumped 9.2 percent last month from a year earlier. Crude also gained on escalating tensions in Ukraine.
“We are seeing some better-than-expected Chinese economic growth numbers,” said Gene McGillian, a senior analyst at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut. “Chinese oil imports are up and that’s kind of easing concerns about global demand. You are seeing a little bit of geopolitical risk come back in the market.”
Brent for December settlement rose $1.04, or 1.3 percent, to $84.43 a barrel at 9:05 a.m. New York time on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange after earlier climbing to $84.97. Prices slid for a seventh week through Nov. 7, the longest weekly retreat since 2001. The volume of all futures traded was 5.3 percent above the 100-day average for the time of day.
WTI for December delivery gained 57 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $79.22 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Volume was 20 percent above the 100-day average. WTI’s discount to Brent widened to $5.19 on the ICE from $4.74 on Nov. 7.