Oil climbs despite poor economic data
U.S. crude oil settled higher on Thursday, although data showed U.S. economic growth slowed in the first quarter and jobless claims rose last week, Xinhua reported.
The oil price surged in early trading session on Thursday as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's comments on Wednesday reassured investors that the ultra-loose monetary policy would still last for a period of time.
However, the oil price dipped after disappointing data drew investors' attention. The U.S. economy grew at an annual rate of 1. 8 percent in the first quarter of 2011, much lower than the 3.1- percent pace in the prior quarter, according to the Commerce Department.
The poor level of U.S. economic expansion dampened investors' expectation of energy demands and weighed on the oil price.
Meanwhile, the Labor Department said new applications for unemployment benefits jumped last week by 25,000 to a seasonally adjusted 429,000, the highest level in three months, suggesting that the recovery of the labor market still had a long way to go.
The oil price reversed its losses and edged higher in late trading session, mainly lifted by the weak dollar.
Light, sweet crude for June delivery rose 10 cents to settle at 112.86 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In London, Brent crude for June delivery last traded above 125 dollars a barrel.