NEW YORK - Oil rose above $85 per barrel yesterday following reports of better-than-expected manufacturing activity in China and Europe and ahead of an expected announcement from the Federal Reserve on Friday about new stimulus for the US economy.
The positive news was offset by reports of more unrest in Libya’s capital.
An end to the country’s six-month rebellion would clear the way for oil exports to resume, but analysts cautioned it will probably take more than a year for oil to begin flowing at levels that would affect prices.
Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude rose $1.02 to finish at $85.44 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, which is used to price oil produced abroad, increased 95 cents to $109.31 per barrel in London.
US gas pump prices rose to a national average $3.572 per gallon, according to AAA and others. A gallon of regular is 86.4 cents more expensive than at the same time last year.
Motorists have been using less gasoline this year because of higher prices.