Oil prices fall

August 22, 2014 - 2:45:28 pm

LONDON: Oil prices fell on Friday amid downbeat Chinese manufacturing data and the low likelihood of supply disruptions in conflict-hit Iraq, Ukraine and Libya, analysts said.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for October delivery slid 41 cents to $93.55 a barrel.

Brent North Sea crude for October dropped 27 cents to stand at $102.36 a barrel in London deals.

Trading is "likely weighed by weaker-than-expected Chinese manufacturing data", Fat Prophets resources analyst David Lennox told AFP.

The HSBC preliminary purchasing managers index for China's manufacturing sector slipped to 50.3 in August, down from a final reading of 51.7 in July. The figure, released Thursday, was the lowest for three months, the British banking giant said in a statement.

The indicator is a closely watched gauge of the health of the Asian economic powerhouse, with a reading above 50 indicating the sector is expanding.

"Prices are perhaps also under pressure as dealers stand on the sidelines tracking the various geopolitical crises going on right now," Lennox said.

"The likelihood of significant disruptions is low for now," he said.

In Iraq, the OPEC oil cartel's second-biggest producer, Islamist militants who have overrun large swathes of the country's north and west are now being pinned back by US military strikes that began on August 8.

In Libya, another OPEC member, crude exports are steadily increasing after a deal between Tripoli and rebels ended a year-long blockade of terminals.

Concerns over the prospect of a full-blown military conflict between Russia and Ukraine have also eased after multi-party talks aimed at diffusing the situation last weekend. (AFP)



 



 

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