Wednesday, 16 January 2013 09:44
SINGAPORE: Oil prices rebounded in Asian trade Wednesday on stronger US demand for heating oil but an impending showdown in the US Congress over the debt ceiling could limit gains, analysts said.
New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in February was up 15 cents to $93.43 a barrel and Brent North Sea crude for February delivery climbed 22 cents to $110.52.
The gains were driven by data showing better-than-expected demand for distillates, including heating oil, in the United States, said Victor Shum managing director of energy consultancy IHS Purvin and Gertz in Singapore.
Shum said a report by the American Petroleum Institute showed inventories of distillates -- refined petroleum products -- fell unexpectedly, indicating strong demand.
"The market reacted bullishly to that," Shum told AFP.
He said however that the price increase could be limited by an impending showdown between Republican and Democrat lawmakers in the US Congress on raising the debt ...