Page last updated at 15:59 GMT, Monday, 10 November 2008

Oil up on China investment plan

Oil pump
Oil prices are sharply down from the record reached in July

The price of oil has climbed more than $4 a barrel following China's multi-billion dollar stimulus package aimed at boosting its economy.

US light sweet crude added $4.28 to $65.32 a barrel in New York while Brent crude rose $4.36 to $61.71.

Prices were also buoyed by the weakening dollar, as traders sought alternative investments.

Oil prices are far below their peak of more than $147 a barrel seen in July, before the recent financial turmoil.

"Oil has been highly correlated to stocks and the dollar" said Clarence Chu, a trader with Hudon Capital Energy in Singapore.

Earlier the Shanghai Composite Index added 7.3% while Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index increased to end 5.8% higher.

"The spending plan may increase crude demand, which is already strong in China," Mr Chu added.

China is seen as a key engine of growth in the world economy.

Oil cartel Opec recently cut output in an attempt to help boost prices, and there is speculation that the group could make further cuts if prices start to fall below $55 a barrel.

"The market expects them to cut again in December at the latest," added Mr Chu.

Last week, the International Energy Agency said demand from developing nations in the long-term was expected to push oil prices higher.

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