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Oil refreshes multi-year high on Libya conflict, U.S. data

04-02-2011 09:33 BJT

NEW YORK, April 1 (Xinhua) -- U.S. crude oil price on Friday surged and refreshed the highest close since September 2008 on Libya's conflict and U.S. positive economic data.

Light, sweet crude for May delivery added 1.22 dollars to settle at 107.94 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, ending this week with a 2.4-percent rise.

The U.S. Labor Department said on Friday, the U.S. unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to a two-year low of 8.8 percent in March. Nonfarm payrolls rose 216,000, more than the economists' expectation of 190,000. A separate report Friday showed U.S. manufacturing expanded at close to the fastest pace in seven years. These positive signs showed the world's largest oil consumer is picking up momentum for the economic recovery, boosting the crude markets.

Oil prices continued to get lifted by conflict in Libya and the Middle East unrest.

In Libya, battles between Muammar Gaddafi's forces and the rebels continued. Bahrain has started to arrest cyber activists and Shi'ites. Protests broke out in Syria after Friday prayers.

In London, Brent crude for May delivery last traded also sharply higher near 119 dollars a barrel.

Total U.S. crude trading volume remained well below the 30-day average, while Brent's volume was also 15 percent below its 30-day average.

Editor:Yang Jie |Source: Xinhua

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