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U.S.-China trade war caps gains

03 Oct 2019

Oil prices edged higher on Monday, rebounding from a two-week low in the previous session, although gains were checked by concerns about the outlook for the global economy.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 14 cents, or 0.3% to $56.05 a barrel. WTI fell to $54.75 a barrel on Friday, its lowest since Sept. 13, when prices closed down 0.9%.

Brent crude futures rose 21 cents, or 0.3%, to $62.12 a barrel, having dipped as low as $60.76 a barrel on Friday when prices fell 1.3%.

Saudi Arabia's crown prince warned in an interview broadcast on Sunday that oil prices could spike to "unimaginably high numbers" if the world does not come together to deter Iran, but said he would prefer a political solution to a military one.

Yemen's Houthi movement said on Saturday it had carried out a major attack near the border with the southern Saudi region of Najran and captured many troops and vehicles, but there was no immediate confirmation from Saudi Arabian authorities.

Still, oil remains under pressure as traders weigh the impact on the global economy of a prolonged trade war between the U.S. and China.

"With Saudi oil production mostly back online, the focus shifts again to the trade war narrative and consequential demand devastation, which is getting intensified by the U.S. administration's possible capital clampdown as they investigate the efficacy of capping U.S. investment flows into China," said Stephen Innes, market strategist, SPI Asset Management.

U.S. President Donald Trump's administration is considering delisting Chinese companies from U.S. stock exchanges, three sources said, in what would be a radical escalation of U.S.-China trade tensions. (Reporting by Colin Packham; editing by Richard Pullin)

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