Oil trades higher on Cyprus rumors

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Investing.com - Oil futures are trading to the upside during Monday's Asian on rumors that Cyprus has reached a tentative deal to land bailout assistance from the European Union and International Monetary Fund.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for May delivery added 0.34% to USD94.03 per barrel in Asian trading Monday. Last week, New York-traded oil futures tacked on a modest 0.3%, the third consecutive weekly gain.

European Union leaders are currently meeting in Brussels in a bid to craft a proposal to help Cyprus and keep the tiny island nation of just 1.1 million people in the euro zone. Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades has approached those leaders with a new plan that would tax deposits at the country's banks of over EUR100,000, but not deposits below that amount.

Cyprus needs to raise EUR5.8 billion in order to tap EUR10 billion in bailout assistance. If a deal is not put together by later today, the European Central Bank will withdraw funding, a move that could hasten Cyprus' bankruptcy and euro zone departure.

Various media agencies are now reporting that a deal has been reached to help Cyprus avert bankruptcy and a possible departure from the euro zone, but those reports cite unidentified sources. It is also believed that Germany, the euro zone's largest economy, has demanded that Cyprus reduce the size of its ailing banking system.

In other oil news, China Petroleum & Chemical said it will buy USD3 billion in international oil and gas assets from its parent, China Petrochemical, that country's second-largest oil company. China Petroleum & Chemical, also known as Sinopec Corp., is looking to added global upstream assets to boost production.

Elsewhere, Brent crude futures for May delivery rose 0.36% to USD107.99 per barrel on the ICE Futures Exchange.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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