- POSTED: 10 Dec 2013 05:19
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Brent oil prices slumped on Monday following news of weaker German industrial output, while New York crude futures dipped slightly.
NEW YORK: Brent oil prices slumped on Monday following news of weaker German industrial output, while New York crude futures dipped slightly.
New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in January, finished the trading session at $97.34 a barrel, down 31 cents from Friday's close.
Brent North Sea crude for January, the European benchmark, tumbled $2.22 to settle at $109.39 a barrel in London trade.
"Brent has slipped below the $110 level as profit-taking from last week's rally coupled with weakening European demand has weighed on prices," said David Madden, market analyst at IG traders.
The German economy, one of the key drivers of recovery in the 17-country eurozone, appears to be stalling, with industrial output declining and exports nearly grinding to a halt, data showed on Monday.
The US benchmark WTI traded in a narrow range because there was "not a lot of big news today on the WTI market, not much really in terms of data from the US," said Bart Melek of TD Securities.
In early trade, he said, WTI had found support from a larger-than-expected surge in China's trade surplus announced by the Chinese government on Sunday as exports jumped almost 13 percent year from a year ago.
China's November trade surplus, the largest in five years, signalled better demand from developed countries and stronger economic growth in China, the world's top energy consumer.
Carl Larry of Oil Outlooks and Opinion said the US oil market was in pause mode "trying to adjust" to Friday's stronger-than-expected November jobs report.
The upbeat labour data appeared to increased the chances that the Fed will begin to wind down its stimulus program, known as quantitative easing, soon.
Many analysts expect the Fed will refrain from tapering QE at next week's monetary policy meeting, but could start to cut back early next year.