Investing.com - Crude oil prices rose in Asia on Monday ahead of a shortened week through much of the region with Japan due to observe a holiday on Tuesday while most other parts of Asia will be closed on Thursday for Labour Day.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light sweet crude oil for delivery in June traded at $100.83 a barrel, up 0.22%, after ending last week down 1.31%, or $1.34 a barrel, to settle at $100.60.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration said last week that crude oil inventories rose by 3.52 million barrels last week to hit at an all-time high of 397.7 million.
U.S. crude supplies have risen in 13 of the last 14 weeks, underlining concerns over a slowdown in demand from the world’s largest oil consumer.
Meanwhile, market players continued to monitor U.S. data for further indications on the strength of the economy and the future course of monetary policy.
Data on Friday showed that consumer confidence rose to a nine-month high in April, adding to signs that the economy is improving.
The University of Michigan reported that its consumer sentiment index came in at 84.1 this month, up from 80 in March and the preliminary reading of 82.6. Analysts had expected the index to rise to 83.0.
In the week ahead, investors will be looking ahead to Wednesday’s monetary policy announcement by the Federal Reserve amid speculation the central bank is likely to continue to scale back its stimulus program.
The U.S. will also release the monthly non-farm payrolls report for April later in the week as well as a preliminary estimate on first quarter economic growth.
Data from the Commodities Futures Trading Commission released Friday showed that hedge funds and money managers decreased their bullish bets in New York-traded oil futures in the week ending April 22.
Net longs totaled 36,463 contracts, down 23.2% from net longs of 47,475 in the preceding week.
Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange in London, Brent oil for June delivery settled at $109.58 a barrel by close of trade on Friday, down 0.68%, or 75 cents.
On the week, the June Brent contract eased down 0.09% or 10 cents a barrel.
London-traded Brent futures hit a seven-week high of $110.65 a barrel on Thursday, as heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine renewed concerns over a disruption to supplies from the region.
Meanwhile the spread between the Brent and the WTI crude contracts stood at $8.98 a barrel by close of trade on Friday, compared to $6.29 in the preceding week.
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