Macroeconomic Data Points at Lower Demand for Crude Oil

Crude oil fell today as unfavorable macroeconomic report from China spurred concerns that growth of the second-biggest world economy is slowing. China’s non-manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index fell from 56.2 in January to 54.5 in February. The index still indicates expansion, standing above the neutral 50.0 level. Yet the slowdown of expansion is still worrying.

The International Energy Agency cut its forecast for oil demand in 2013. Signs of slower global economic growth led analysts to believe that consumption will decline.

WTI crude trades about the $90 level as of now, but dipped below this level intraday. Technical analysts believe that further drop may follow the breach of the important support level.

Futures for delivery of WTI crude oil in April declined $0.59 (0.65 percent) to $90.08 per barrel as of 20:01 GMT on NYMEX today. April contract for Brent grade of crude oil edged down $0.30 (0.27 percent) to $110.10 per barrel on ICE.

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