Oil prices rose in early trading on Monday as Asian markets opened strongly into a holiday-shortened week and as consensus spread thatBrent crude prices would likely remain above $60 for the rest of theyear.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.3 percent in early trade, while Japan’s Nikkei stock average was up 0.4 percent ahead of a Japanese holiday on Tuesday.
Front-month Brent crude prices climbed over a percentage point to above $62 per barrel after markets jumped more than 5 percent on Friday in lighter-than-usual pre-holiday volume that exaggerated the move higher.
Analysts said that Brent had received broad support after testing $60 abarrel at five-and-a-half year lows earlier this month and that consensus was growing that prices would likely remain above that level for the rest of the year.
Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao said that Brent prices would receive support at $60.77 a barrel and that they were trending up towards a target of $63.52 per barrel.
Front-month Brent was trading at $62.04, up $0.66 at 0210 GMT, andU.S. WTI’s front-month contracts were up $0.69 at $57.82 a barrel.