x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

China demand pumps oil price to month high

The price of oil rose yesterday to its highest in a month, helped by strong Chinese industrial demand.

The price of oil rose yesterday to its highest in a month, helped by strong Chinese industrial demand and tightened supply due to the extended shutdown of a major crude pipeline. US Nymex crude for October delivery rose US$1.05 to $77.50 a barrel, the highest price since August 12, while Brent rose 29 cents to $78.45, as China's implied oil demand increased by 7.4 per cent last month from August last year. New refineries are struggling to keep up with increased demand in the rapidly growing economy. A major pipeline carrying Canadian crude to the US remains shut after a leak, with no timetable yet in place for restarting the flow.

The Egypt Stock Exchange gained 1.8 per cent to 6,618. Arab Cotton Ginning added 11.5 per cent to 4.49 Egyptian pounds, the highest in almost 18 months, as the company reported a sevenfold increase in net income to 204.4 million Egyptian pounds for the fiscal year ending in June, up from 28.9m Egyptian pounds the previous year. "The textile industry's domination of the market is dependant on how long ACG can maintain its reasonable operational performance," a Cairo trader told Reuters.

Traders warned that although textile stocks appear to be cheap, much of the price includes the value of the land and not just their operational performance. Growing investor appetite in textile products helped push other stocks in the sector higher. Arab Polavara rose 4.9 per cent to 3.79 pounds and Kabo El Nasr Clothing and Textiles added 2.4 per cent to 1.24 pounds. The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index added 1.3 per cent to 2,566.56, while the Dubai Financial Market General Index added 2.4 per cent to 1,630.85. Other regional exchanges in the Gulf were closed yesterday for Eid.