Corrected: Oil prices rebound after Trump trade tariffs trigger plunge

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TOKYO (Reuters) – Oil prices rose more than $1 on Friday, rebounding from their biggest falls in years after U.S. President Donald Trump imposed more tariffs on Chinese imports, intensifying the trade war between the world’s two biggest economies and crude consumers.

Brent crude futures slumped more than 7% on Thursday, their steepest drop in more than three years. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell nearly 8%, posting its worst day in more than four years,

The collapse ended a fragile rally built on steady drawdowns in U.S. inventories, even as global demand looked shaky because of the trade dispute.

Brent futures rose $1.53, or 2.6%, to $62.03 a barrel by 0220 GMT, while WTI futures gained $1.02, or 1.9%, to $54.97 a barrel.

Trump said on Thursday he would impose a 10% tariff on $300 billion of Chinese imports from Sept. 1 and could raise tariffs further if China’s President Xi Jinping fails to move more quickly to strike a trade deal.

The announcement extends Trump’s tariffs to nearly all of China’s imports into the United States and marks an abrupt end to a temporary truce in a trade war that has disrupted global supply chains and roiled financial markets.

Brent and U.S. crude are heading for their first weekly declines in three, on track for falls of more than 2%.

“Global growth estimates have been under pressure from the tariff war and the move by the U.S. erases all the goodwill gained earlier in the week when U.S. negotiators were in Shanghai to kickstart trade talks,” Alfonso Esparza, market analyst at OANDA said in a note.

There have been mounting signs this week of the economic toll of the trade dispute between the United States and China, which reported this week slowing manufacturing activity in July.

U.S. manufacturing activity also slipped last month, dropping to a near three-year low, and construction spending fell in June as investment in private construction projects tumbled to its lowest level in 1-1/2 years.

The economic slowdown has translated into falling oil demand in the United States, the world’s biggest oil consumer.

The amount of crude processed at U.S. oil refineries averaged 17.2 million barrels per day over the past four weeks, down 1.3% from the same time a year ago, U.S. government data showed this week.

Reporting by Aaron Sheldrick; editing by Richard Pullin and Christian Schmollinger

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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