MTECHTIPS- Crude oil prices held overnight gains into Asia on Thursday as manufacturing figures out of China lifted regional sentiment on demand by the world’s second largest importer. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, U.S. crude for January delivery edged up 0.06% to $49.47 a barrel in Asia. Brent crude futures traded on London’s Intercontinental Exchange were quoted flat at $51.84 a barrel. China reported Thursday that the semi-official CFLP manufacturing index came in at 51.7 for November, compared with a 51.0 level seen, and up from 51.2 the previous month. The CFLP non-manufacturing PMI came in at 54.7, compared to 54.0 last month, subsequent figures from the private Caixin manufacturing PMI rose to 50.9 in November, beating an expected 50.8 level. The Caixin index has now been above the 50-point neutral level which separates expansion in activity from contraction for five straight months, adding to views that in the world’s second-largest economy growth has stabilized thanks to a credit and construction boom. Overnight, oil prices surged nearly 9%, climbing after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) agreed to slash production.