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U.S. oil prices edge down amid uncertain global economic outlook

Colin Packham

SYDNEY, Jan 16 (Reuters) - U.S. oil prices inched lower on Wednesday after gains of more 3 percent in the previous session, pressured by concerns over the outlook for the global economy.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $51.82 per barrel at 0024 GMT, down 29 cents, or 0.5 percent, from their last settlement.

International Brent crude oil futures had yet to trade.

Oil prices jumped around 3 percent on Tuesday when China's National Development and Reform Commission signalled a willingness to offer more fiscal stimulus following weaker-than-expected trade figures earlier in the week.

But that appeared to offer only temporary support to crude prices amid persistent worries over the impact of the Sino-U.S. trade conflict.

"Trade data out of China this week was not positive with drops in exports and imports showing a clear impact of U.S. tariffs," said Alfonso Esparza, senior market analyst at futures brokerage, Oanda.

The outlook for the global economy was darkened further when British lawmakers on Tuesday overwhelmingly rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's deal to leave the European Union.

Global demand has emerged as a key driver for oil prices as fears of oversupply were tempered when the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and major crude producer Russia said late last year that they would cut supply.

However, U.S. crude oil is expected to rise to a new record of more than 12 million barrels per day (bpd) this year and to climb to nearly 13 million bpd next year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Tuesday in its first 2020 forecast. (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Joseph Radford)