Oil gains on stronger European, US manufacturing data

Oil prices surged Monday helped by signs of strengthening manufacturing in Europe and the United States, as well as some concerns about deteriorating political conditions in Egypt, analysts said.

In New York the benchmark WTI contract for delivery in August added $1.43 a barrel to $97.99.

In London, Brent North Sea for August gained 84 cents to $103.00.

The Markit Eurozone Composite Purchasing Managers Index, a survey of what manufacturers see happening in their production processes, rose to 48.8 in June from 48.3 in May.

While still in contraction territory, it hit a 16-month high and raised hopes the eurozone was finally climbing back out of recession.

"European investors appear to have taken the positives from today's better than expected European manufacturing PMI reports from Spain, as well as Italy as evidence that the European economy may at last be starting to gain traction, albeit from very low levels," said Michael Hewson, senior market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

Meanwhile the manufacturing PMI for the US turned positive again after a month in contraction territory.

Worries about disturbances in Egypt and the military giving the government 48 hours to quell the violence may have also increased nervousness in oil markets, said Timothy Evans of Citi Futures.

The protests in Egypt "increase the risk of broader regional instability," he said.