NEW YORK, Oct. 24 (Xinhua) -- U.S. oil prices rebounded from a four-month low Thursday, boosted by signs of growth in China's manufacturing sector.
HSBC China Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to 50.9 in October from 50.2 in September, exceeding market consensus of 50.4. Output rose to 51 from 50.2, and new orders climbed to 51.6 from 50.8, while new export orders increased only marginally to 50.8 from 50.7.
The pick-up of China's flash PMI suggests that growth momentum may hold up in October in the world's second largest oil consumer. Solid Chinese economic data suggested an improved outlook for energy demand.
Thursday's gains came after three consecutive sessions of declines, as the equity market edged up on a batch of encouraging corporate earnings reports.
Light, sweet crude for December delivery increased 25 cents to settle at 97.11 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. However, European benchmark Brent crude for December delivery lost 81 cents to close at 106.99 dollars a barrel.
U.S. crude price fell to the lowest level in almost four months on Wednesday as data signaled ample supplies in the United States, the world's largest oil consumer.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration said crude supplies increased by 5.2 million barrels to 379.8 million barrels for the week ended Oct. 18, beating analysts' expectation of 4 million barrels.