NEW YORK, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- Oil prices moved up Friday as encouraging economic growth data from China boosted hopes of crude demand.
China's gross domestic product growth accelerated to 7.8 percent in the third quarter of the year, up from 7.5 percent in the second quarter, the country's National Bureau of Statistics said Friday. The latest figure marked the fastest pace of growth this year.
China is also an important energy consumer and oil importer in the world. Solid Chinese economic data spread an optimistic signal across the crude markets.
Oil prices were also supported by wide expectations that the U. S. Federal Reserve would delay its tapering of stimulus monetary policy given the damage caused by the 16-day federal government shutdown that ended Wednesday. Most traders believe the U.S. central bank will not start to taper until early 2014.
The oil price gains, however, were limited by concerns about the temporary fiscal deal struck in Washington, which failed to address many of the contentious issues and sowed the seeds for new fiscal fight in a few months.
The U.S. government ended its partial shutdown by a last-minute deal passed by both the Republican-led House of Representatives and Democrat-dominated Senate Wednesday night. The bill funds the government through Jan. 15 and raises the debt ceiling until Feb. 7.
Trader worried that there would be another deadlock in Washington when time is up.
Light, sweet crude for November delivery increased 14 cents to settle at 100.81 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange,while Brent crude for December delivery gained 83 cents to close at 109.94 dollars a barrel.