Crude oil futures were lower during European morning hours on Wednesday, as investors looked ahead to closely-watched weekly supply data on U.S. stockpiles of crude and refined products from the U.S. Energy Information Administration later in the day.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light sweet crude oil futures for delivery in June traded at USD88.67 a barrel during European morning trade, down 0.4% on the day.
New York-traded oil prices fell by as much as 0.5% earlier in the session to hit a daily low of USD88.58 a barrel. Nymex oil futures fell to USD86.41 a barrel on Tuesday, the weakest level since December 17.
Oil traders awaited data from the U.S. government on oil and fuel supplies later in the day to gauge the strength of demand from the world’s largest oil consumer.
The report was expected to show that U.S. crude oil stockpiles increased by 1.3 million barrels last week, while gasoline inventories were forecast to fall by 0.8 million barrels.
After markets closed Tuesday, the American Petroleum Institute, an industry group, said that U.S. crude inventories fell by 6.6 million barrels last week, compared to expectations for an increase of 1.35 million barrels, while gasoline stocks rose by 0.25 million barrels.
The U.S. is the world’s biggest oil consuming country, responsible for almost 22% of global oil demand.
Oil prices have been under pressure amid concerns over the global economic outlook and its impact on future oil demand.
On Tuesday, the International Monetary Fund cut its 2013 forecast for global growth to 3.3%, down from its January projection of 3.5%. It also trimmed its 2014 forecast to 4.0% from 4.1%.
Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange, Brent oil futures for June delivery was flat to trade at USD99.93 a barrel, with the spread between the Brent and crude contracts standing at USD11.26 a barrel.
London-traded Brent futures fell to a nine-month low of USD98.02 a barrel on Tuesday, amid growing concerns over the euro zone’s economic outlook.
The IMF said Tuesday the euro zone remains the weakest part of the global economy. The 17 countries using the euro accounted for about 12% of world demand last year.
Courtesy : Investing.com