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Oil prices steadied on Thursday as data showed China’s crude imports rebounded, but market watchers expect gains to be capped by the glut in supplies as the coronavirus pandemic crushes global fuel demand.
Brent crude (LCOc1) was up by 3 cents, or 0.1%, to $29.75 a barrel 0341 GMT, after dropping 4% on Wednesday.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate futures (CLc1) gained 4 cents, or 0.2%, to 24.03 a barrel, after declining more than 2% in the previous session.
Both contracts traded in an out of negative territory through the Asian morning on light trade with some markets on holiday.
Oil prices were supported by data showing Chinese crude imports rose last month. Imports climbed to 10.42 million barrels day (bpd) in April from 9.68 million bpd in March, according to Reuters calculations based on customs data for the first four months of 2020. Overall exports from China also rose against expectations of a sharp drop.