Oil price

Oil prices remained positive today over signs of recovery in the Chinese economy, which is expected to boost oil demand outlook.

Brent crude futures slipped by 32 cents to settle at $110.54 a barrel, while US crude rose by 11 cents to $87.49 a barrel over a surprise drop of 1.47 million-barrels in the US inventory, reports Reuters.

The manufacturing industry in China, which struggled to realise any expansion in the last 13 months, finally saw expansion happening during November 2012, sending positive signs out over the economy.

The US too saw positive growth in its manufacturing sector during November, driven by surge in domestic demand with expectations increasing on factories to provide a boost to the economy in the fourth quarter. A surprise drop in US oil inventory also helped oil prices to stay positive.

However, investors still continue to carry concerns over the fiscal cliff, a serious issue facing the world’s largest crude market with a direct impact on its economic recovery.

Furthermore, the ceasefire agreed upon by both Israel and Palestine also had an impact on prices by way of capping the rally.

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By GlobalData

On Wednesday, both Israel and the Islamist Hamas movement came to terms on an Egyptian-sponsored ceasefire that created supply concerns from the Middle East for the last eight days.

The UN Security Council appreciated the efforts of Egypt for sponsoring ceasefire and advised Israel and Hamas to uphold the agreement.

Image: Remnants of Qassam rockets fired from the Gaza Strip at Israel in a photo taken after Egyptian-brokered Israel-Hamas ceasefire in 2008. Photo courtesy of Marek Peters.