News Column

Crude Oil Sinks To 6-Month Low Near USD97

August 1, 2014

WASHINGTON (Alliance News) - Crude oil prices are drifting lower Friday morning, extending losses to a fifth session, amid concerns about a likely fall in demand.

Traders are looking ahead to the crucial US monthly jobs data, due at 8:30 am ET.

The developments in Ukraine and Israel are being watched as well. According to reports, Israeli forces and Hamas are engaged in exchange of fire, barely hours after the ceasefire took effect.

Crude oil futures for September are down USD0.68 or 0.69% at USD97.49 a barrel, after declining to USD97.10 a barrel, a six-month low.

On Thursday, crude oil futures ended down USD2.10 or 2.1% at USD98.17 a barrel.

Disappointing economic data with a report showing slower growth of manufacturing activity in the Chicago area and a notable jump in jobless claims contributed to oil's decline.

Meanwhile, natural gas for September is down USD0.044 or 1.16% at USD3.797 per million btu.

The monthly non-farm payrolls report from the US Labor Department will be out at 8:30 am ET. The consensus estimate calls for an addition of 233,000 jobs after non-farm payrolls expanded by 288,000 in the previous month.

Around the same time, the Commerce Department will release its personal income and spending report for June. Economists expect a 0.4% month-over-month increase in both personal income and spending.

The final reading on US consumer sentiment from Reuters and the University of Michigan, data on manufacturing activity from Markit and the results of national manufacturing survey from the Institute for Supply Management are due this morning. Traders will also be tracking the monthly sales data from US automakers.

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Source: Alliance News

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