Crude Oil News
1 JUL 2014

West Texas Intermediate oil futures trimmed losses on Monday, after data showed that pending home sales in the U.S. rose to an eight-month high in May.

Crude oil off the lows after U.S. data, Iraq supplies in focusCrude oil trims losses after U.S. data

Prices were weighed as investors continued to unwind positions that had priced in the possibility of major supply disruptions stemming from the bloody Iraqi insurgency.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude oil for delivery in August fell to a session low of $105.09 a barrel, the weakest level since June 26, before trimming losses to last trade at $105.53 during U.S. morning hours, down 0.2%, or 21 cents.

U.S. oil futures ended down 0.09%, or 10 cents, on Friday to settle at $105.74. New York-traded oil futures were likely to find support at $105.03 a barrel, the low from June 26 and resistance at $106.81 a barrel, the high from June 26.

The National Association of Realtors said its pending home sales index rose by a seasonally adjusted 6.1% in May, easily surpassing expectations for a 1.5% gain. Pending home sales in April rose by 0.5%.

The report came after market research group Kingsbury International said its Chicago purchasing managersí index slumped to a three-month low of 62.6 in June from a reading of 65.5 in May. Analysts had expected the index to decline to 63.0 this month.

Investors now turned their attention to the U.S. nonfarm payrolls report for June, due to be released one day early on Thursday, for further indications on the strength of the labor market.

Analysts expect the U.S. economy to have added 210,000 jobs this month while the jobless rate is seen steady at 6.3%.
Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange in London, Brent oil for August delivery dropped 0.65%, or 73 cents, to trade at $112.57 a barrel, the lowest level since June 17.

Oil prices continued their downward trend in recent sessions amid indications Iraqi oil exports from the southern part of the country remained insulated from the sectarian violence that has swept the north in recent weeks.

Futures rallied to nine-month highs earlier in the month amid fears that an insurgency in northern Iraq would spread to the oil-rich south and disrupt the nation's oil production.

Iraq produced approximately 3 million barrels a day of oil last month, making it OPECís second-biggest oil producer behind Saudi Arabia.

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