NEW YORK — Oil prices are rising on hopes that the Federal Reserve will take additional steps to prop up the economy.
Benchmark U.S. crude on Monday added 20 cents at $87.30 per barrel, while Brent crude rose 81 cents to $102.23 per barrel.
The Federal Reserve is considering new steps to boost consumer spending in the U.S., and analysts are betting Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will discuss those steps when he addresses Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Expectations for new stimulus boosted prices despite a series of downbeat economic reports.
The International Monetary Fund lowered its global growth forecast, and the Commerce Department said retail sales fell in June for a third straight month. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao also said over the weekend that China's "economic difficulties may continue for some time."
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