Crude oil futures extended losses in Asia electronic session today pulling back from last week’s rally on news of potential nuclear talks between the U.S. and Iran and as rising political tensions in Spain helped fuel a rally by the dollar.
Crude for March delivery is trading down 12 cents at $ 96.05 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Yesterday, it lost $1.60, or 1.6%, to settle at $96.17 a barrel. Prices gained 2% last week after a spate of U.S. economic data.
Oil continued to trade lower after the Commerce Department reported on Monday a 1.8% rise in December U.S. factory orders.
Iran’s Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi has said his country would consider resuming nuclear negotiations with major world powers on Feb. 25, according to various news reports.
The rising political tension in Spain helped send the euro lower, lifting the ICE dollar index to 79.547 from 79.097 late Friday.
On the data front today, Australia's central bank kept its key cash rate on hold at 3%, as widely expected. "Global growth is forecast to be a little below average for a time, but the downside risks appear to have abated, for the moment at least," said RBC Gov. Glenn Stevens.
Australia's trade deficit narrowed sharply and by more than expected in December, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics Tuesday. The deficit totaled 427 million Australian dollars ($445 million), from A$2.8 billion in November. Exports rose 3% to A$25.4 billion while imports declined 6% to A$25.8 billion.
MCX February delivery crude oil futures may open today’s session near Rs 5140 levels with support around Rs 5115 and Rs 5095 levels.
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