Oil extended its two-week rally on Monday as more data showed the U.S. housing market was easing from the recession, Xinhua reported.
The Commerce Department said on Monday that purchases of new homes in the United States climbed 11 percent in June, the biggest gain in eight years, supporting the notion that things were getting better in the most-battered housing sector.
Meanwhile, the dollar traded near the lowest level this year against a basket of major currencies on speculation the global economy were heading for a recovery, limiting the safe-haven demand for the currency and boosting commodities' appeal as an alternative investment.
Light, sweet crude for September delivery rose 33 cents to settle at 68.38 U.S. dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. London Brent for September delivery rose 50 cents to 70. 82 dollars a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.