“Brent crude oil rose above $111 a barrel on Friday as better-than-expected German business sentiment data helped ease worries about demand in the eurozone economies, boosting the euro against the dollar, whilst fresh protests broke out in Egypt.

Brent crude futures were up 0.7 percent at about $111 a barrel. U.S. light, sweet crude was up 1.2 percent against Wednesday's settlement to $88.44. The U.S. market, which was closed on Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday, will not issue a formal settlement price until later Friday.

Although a cease-fire in Gaza is holding, violence has erupted in Egypt after a decree by President Mohamed Mursi caused fury amongst his opponents.

Police fired teargas at protesters on the edge of Cairo's Tahrir Square where thousands of people were demonstrating against Mursi, accusing him of launching a "coup."

This ramped up the risk premium in oil prices as investors and traders worried about potential disruption to Middle East oil supplies. At the same time, better-than-expected economic data from Germany helped risk assets move up in thin volumes on Friday.

The euro hit a session peak against the dollar in early New York trade, helped by the Ifo data and hopes that Greece's lenders were nearing an agreement to release further aid for the debt-stricken country.

A weaker dollar makes commodities priced in dollars more affordable for buyers using other currencies. The dollar was down 0.66 percent against a basket of currencies at 1508 GMT.

But Hewson was dismissive of hopes that the eurozone's problems were about to be resolved and said markets were climbing on little more than "wire chatter" about potential bail-outs for struggling Southern European economies.”

http://www.cnbc.com/id/49934255

 

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