Brent‘s value increased slightly today, with a rebound in export growth showing signs of improvement in the Chinese economy.

Brent crude increased by five cents to $103.51 a barrel, while US crude grew by 23 cents at $94.43, reported Reuters.

In the early session Brent’s value decreased to nearly $103, as China’s crude oil imports in October dropped to a 13-month low as investors feared a reduction in further oil demand, in the second biggest oil consuming country.

The General Administration of Customs data revealed that China has brought in 20.41 million tonnes, or 4.81 million barrels per day (bpd), of oil in October.

Imports were 13.8% down, compared to the 23.68 million tonnes of crude shipped during the corresponding month last year, and down 20.5% from 25.68 million tonnes in September.

The slower purchases followed a build up in China’s commercial crude oil inventories that gained more than ten percent over end-July through end-September.

Brent crude oil futures slid nearly two percent on Thursday, with the strengthening of the dollar and progress in talks between Iran and the West over Tehran’s disputed nuclear programme.

But oil got support from more civil disputes in Libya, where heavy fighting rocked the capital Tripoli as rival militias battled.

US gross domestic product (GDP) growth accelerated in the third quarter at a 2.8% annual rate, the quickest pace in a year, after expanding at a 2.5% clip in the second quarter.

The traders are awaiting a jobs report due later in the day and China’s refinery throughput data, which is due to be released on Saturday.

Image: Brent’s value increased as heavy fighting rocked Libya’s Tripoli. Photo courtesy of