July saw consumer spending in the US rise at its fastest pace in five months- calming worries that the world's top oil consumer is once again headed towards recession. Brent October crude inched up to settle at US$112.3 a barrel, while US October crude inched up to close at US$87.7, highest intraday price since August 17. Brent crude prices rose for the sixth consecutive day supported by the market cheer as well as a breakthrough bank merger deal in Greece. Oil prices were also propped by a recovery in stock markets as investors switched back to riskier assets.
Two Greek banks - Alpha and EFG Eurobank, inked a merger expected to prompt more deals to sustain a sector flayed by the eurozone's severe debt crisis and recession. The merger has resulted in a much needed capital boost to a sector affected by Grrece's severe debt crisis that has threatened to spread through the euro zone. A marginal dip was seen in the dollar index as investors moved to riskier assets. A weaker greenback makes dollar-denominated oil more attractive to holders of other currencies.