Price of oil rises after dropping to 8-month low

Brent crude reaches $105 per barrel

An oil derrick at a fracking site for extracting oil outside of Williston, North Dakota. The price of oil rose today after reaching an 8-month low last week.  Photograph: Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

An oil derrick at a fracking site for extracting oil outside of Williston, North Dakota. The price of oil rose today after reaching an 8-month low last week. Photograph: Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Mon, Apr 8, 2013, 10:44

Brent crude rose towards $105 per barrel today as Japan's ambitious plan to stimulate the world's third largest economy is expected to enhance liquidity in the markets.

Oil prices are expected to trade in a tight range this week ahead of a spate of economic data from China that will throw light on the pace of recovery in the world's second-biggest oil consumer and its monetary policy.

Brent crude rose 58 cents to $104.70 per barrel, after dropping to an eight-month low last week and recording its worst week since June.

US crude rose 33 cents to $93.03 per barrel, after logging its biggest weekly loss in more than six months.

While an intense burst of monetary stimulus from the Bank of Japan -- which has promised to inject about $1.4 trillion into the economy in less than two years -- will support the outlook for oil, weak data from top consumer the United States will keep gains in check.

American employers hired at the weakest pace in nine months in March, adding 88,000 jobs in March compared with expectations of 200,000, data showed on Friday, stoking worries about the health of the world's largest economy.

Support may emerge in coming weeks from China's economic growth data for the quarter ended March 31st, which may show continuing evidence of a moderate recovery, with growth expected at 8 percent from 7.9 percent in the last quarter of 2012.

Industrial output growth is also expected to be steady while inflation may have slowed in March, increasing the likelihood that the central bank will continue to maintain a benign monetary policy.