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Oil prices mixed ahead of US data

Oct 26 2012 07:46 AFP

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Singapore - Oil prices were mixed in Asia on Friday as traders await the release of US growth figures later in the day while better than expected jobless and manufacturing data provided support, analysts said.

New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in December fell two cents to $86.03 a barrel and Brent North Sea crude for December added 15 cents to $108.64.

Traders remain nervous ahead of US third-quarter data later on Friday, with forecasts pointing to growth of 1.6% for the world's biggest economy.

Data released on Thursday provided some hope. US Labour Department figures showed initial jobless claims falling by 23 000 to 369 000 in the week ending October 20. That was better than the average estimate of 375 000.

And durable goods orders also rose 9.9% from August, well above the average analyst forecast of 8.0 percent.

"We saw yesterday a mix of reasonable data coming out in terms of durable goods and jobless claims falling," said Jason Hughes, head of premium client management for IG Markets Singapore.

"All eyes will be on the US GDP tonight, which will perhaps give a guide on whether we are truly turning the corner."

commodities  |  markets  |  oil
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