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Oil futures rise on weaker dollar, new cash inflows

Crude oil futures rose early on Tuesday, pushed up by a weaker dollar and a flood of new cash into the market, but analysts warned that fundamentals remain weak as a producer race for customers heats up in the Middle East.

Front-month Brent crude futures were trading at $44.84 per barrel at 0054 GMT, up 36 cents from their last settlement, and U.S. crude futures gained 39 cents at $43.03.

Futures traders said prices had been lifted by a weaker dollar overnight, which potentially spurs demand from fuel importers using other currencies than the greenback, in which crude is traded.

A rush of new investment into crude futures was also pushing up prices as speculators raised their holdings of Brent futures to a record high.