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UPDATE 3-Oil edges above $107 before U.S. jobs report
December 7, 2012 / 9:43 AM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 3-Oil edges above $107 before U.S. jobs report

* China data expected to show growth recovery

* Political impasse on U.S. fiscal crisis in focus

* Coming up: U.S. non-farm payrolls; 1330 GMT (Previous SINGAPORE, updates prices)

LONDON, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Oil edged above $107 a barrel on Friday supported by expectations of a recovery in Chinese economic growth, although concern about weakness in Europe and the United States kept prices on course for a weekly decline.

Chinese growth is reviving, leading to some optimism about demand from the world’s top energy consumer. Annual growth in factory output, investment and retail sales may have gained pace in November, a Reuters poll showed ahead of figures on Dec. 9.

“The big picture is that Europe is weak, (the) U.S. is undecided and China is strong, so the news flow from these three will be what determines prices,” said Jonathan Barratt, chief executive officer at Barratt’s Bulletin, a Sydney-based research firm.

Brent crude added 33 cents to $107.36 by 0934 GMT, after dropping for four straight sessions. For the week, Brent was down about 3.4 percent, its biggest decline since the week to Nov. 2. U.S. crude rose 15 cents to $86.41.

Economic worries about both sides of the Atlantic have curbed investor appetite for riskier assets, dragging down the Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index, a bellwether for commodities, about 4 percent so far this quarter.

Germany’s Bundesbank cut its growth outlook for next year on Friday as the euro zone debt crisis takes its toll on Europe’s largest economy, but added that the country would return to its growth path soon.

Adding to the jitters was the political impasse on the U.S. fiscal policy.

Republicans in Congress and President Barack Obama spent much of Wednesday talking up their positions on the “fiscal cliff” and though Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner spoke by phone, neither side offered any new compromises in public.

Later on Friday, investors will focus on the latest U.S. jobs report. The non-farm payrolls data for November which may show a slowdown in job growth in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy that disrupted economic activity.

Federal Reserve policymakers are scheduled to meet Dec. 11-12 to review monetary policy. Oil exporter group OPEC also meets next week, on Wednesday, and is not expected to alter output policy. (Reporting by Ramya Venugopal and Alex Lawler; Editing by William Hardy)

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