Oil extends gains in Asian trade

Oil extends gains in Asian trade

Singapore: Oil prices extended gains in light Asian trade on Tuesday, riding a rebound the previous session following a modest rise on Wall Street, analysts said.

New York’s main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in August, rose 24 cents to $76.78 a barrel on its last day of trade, while Brent North Sea crude for September gained 29 cents to $75.91.

“We’re just seeing oil prices creeping up marginally higher," David Moore, a Sydney-based commodity strategist with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, told AFP.

“There hasn’t been really any macroeconomic news of note... so I’m not sure if the gains are anything other than a slight drift in the market."

Traders were watching financial data from corporate giants for leads as the US earnings season picks up steam, with major companies including Apple, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Yahoo! next in line.

Later this week, markets will also focus on US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke’s two-day Congressional testimony and the outcome of so-called “stress tests" on the health of European banks on Friday.

Moore said oil prices would continue to trade within the $74 to $78 a barrel range but could see “further volatility" in the near term.