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Oil Prices Edge Up Ahead Of US-China Trade Deal

Oil prices rose slightly on Tuesday amid optimism about a U.S.-China trade deal and expectations of a drawdown in U.S. crude oil inventories.

Benchmark Brent crude edged up 0.3 percent to $64.39 per barrel after falling 1 percent on Monday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were up 0.1 percent at $58.13 a barrel, snapping a five-session losing streak.

Investors also welcomed signs of a thawing in relations between the United States and China after the U.S. Treasury Department dropped China's designation as a currency manipulator and China pledged to buy nearly an additional $80 billion of U.S. manufactured goods over the next two years.

The phase one U.S.-China trade deal is due to be signed at the White House on Wednesday. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told Fox Business that the Chinese translation of the deal's text was almost done.

Meanwhile, ahead of the API's and EIA's weekly crude oil inventory reports, a preliminary Reuters poll showed that U.S. crude oil inventories have fallen last week.

Date showed earlier in the day that China's crude oil imports grew by 9.5 percent in 2019 to 10.16 million b/d, despite a month-on-month decline of 3.8 percent in December.

Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Abdulaziz bin Salman said in a Bloomberg television interview on Monday that OPEC and its allies remain focused on using production cuts to reduce oil inventories to normal levels, undeterred by the flare up in geopolitical tensions.

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