NEW YORK, N.Y. – Improved economic news helped oil rebound from day-earlier losses to post a small gain near US$97 a barrel at midday Tuesday.
Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for March delivery rose 67 cents to US$96.84 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after having dropped $1.60 to finish at US$96.17 a barrel on Monday.
Data published Tuesday showing rising activity in the manufacturing and services sectors in the 17 European Union countries using the euro supported oil prices. A U.S. report also showed the services sector continues to expand.
Brent crude, the benchmark used to set prices for oil imported by many U.S. refineries, was up $1.37 to US$116.97 in London.
In other energy futures trading on the Nymex, wholesale gasoline added three cents to US$3.05 a U.S. gallon (3.79 litres), heating oil gained five cents to US$3.20 a gallon and natural gas rose three cents to US$3.35 per 1,000 cubic feet.