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Oil prices rebound from multi-week losses

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

World oil prices rebounded Tuesday on bargain hunting after hitting multi-week lows the previous day amid economic strains in China and the United States, analysts said.

Brent North Sea crude for delivery in April increased 74 cents to $110.83 a barrel. The contract hit $109.58 on Monday, the lowest point since mid-January.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) light sweet crude for April added 23 cents to $90.35 a barrel. It dropped below $90 on Monday for the first time in two months.

"We are seeing some bargain hunting after Brent and WTI prices slid," said Ker Chung Yang, a senior investment analyst at Phillip Futures.

Sentiment was hurt by economic worries in China and the United States, which are the world's two biggest crude consuming countries.

China's official purchasing managers' index showed on Friday that growth in manufacturing activity slowed last month, suggesting that a recent pick-up in the world's number two economy was weaker than initially thought.

Economists also warned that across-the-board cuts of $85 billion in federal spending in the United States that kicked in on Friday could lead to job losses and hinder growth in the still fragile economy.

US President Barack Obama on Monday said the cuts would "eventually" cause deep pain, and again pitched his plan for a compromise with Republican lawmakers.

burs-bcp/wai

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130305/oil-prices-rebound-multi-week-losses