Crude oil prices were up on Tuesday supported by a weak US dollar and China’s strong crude demand.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $45.75 per barrel at 0608 GMT for a 1.03% increase after closing Monday at $45.28 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was at $43.02 a barrel at the same time for a 0.96% increase after ending the previous session at $42.61 per barrel.
The US dollar index, which measures the value of the American dollar against a basket of currencies including the Japanese yen, British pound, Canadian dollar, Swedish krona and Swiss franc, fell to as low as $92.146 earlier Tuesday -- its lowest level since May 2018.
The decline in the value of the greenback is encouraging oil-importing countries to purchase more crude oil at cheaper dollar prices, which in turn is supporting higher crude prices.
After the dramatic fall in the US dollar index, China's significant amount of crude oil purchases reinforced the positive oil price trend.
Chinese state-owned oil companies had previously booked tankers for August and September to carry at least 20 million barrels of US crude.
On the supply side, more support for higher crude prices came from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), as Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) said it plans to slash crude supplies by 30% in October.
However, the growing number of COVID-19 cases globally is suppressing the rise in prices, signaling that global oil consumption will likely remain low up for the rest of the year.
The number of COVID-19 cases worldwide is now over 25.4 million, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University.
While the US still tops the number of cases with over 6 million as of Tuesday morning, Brazil has more than 3.9 million cases, and India follows with over 3.6 million cases.
By Sibel Morrow