Weak economic figures emerging from China, along with growing US oil inventories, has helped Brent crude prices slip back for a second consecutive day in early trading, reported Reuters.
Brent crude was trading at $66.2 a fall of 40 cents after shedding 87 cents yesterday. China revealed that factory growth has reduced to its lowest rate since mid-2016, prompting fears among traders of a global economic slowdown. Experts highlighted the week-long New Year holiday, in addition to new pollution regulations, as factors in the poor results.
Meanwhile, in the US, the American Petroleum Institute published data showing inventories spiked by more than 900,000 barrels last week, taking the overall figure to 421.2mn.
Official data from the US Energy Information Administration is due out on Wednesday.
“Climbing US production continues to weigh on the market as traders fear that the OPEC output cuts will be nullified by the rising US output,” William O’Loughlin, investment analyst at Australia’s Rivkin Securities told the news agency.