Oil prices slip as weak Japan data exposes market jitters over fragile demand
June 30: Oil prices fell in early trade on Tuesday after weak Japanese industrial production data, not usually a market-moving factor, was enough to jangle trader nerves over a bumpy recovery in fuel demand as coronavirus pandemic restrictions ease.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures briefly traded higher then fell 38 cents, or 1per cent, to $39.32 a barrel by 0038 GMT, after climbing 3per cent on Monday.
Brent crude futures for September fell 32 cents, or 0.8per cent, to $41.53 a barrel, paring Monday's 92-cent gain. There were no early trades on the August contract, which rose 69 cents on Monday and expires on Tuesday.
"Japanese industrial production data released this morning may take the gloss off the overnight moves," CMC Markets strategist Michael McCarthy said in a note.
Japan reported industrial output for May fell 8.4per cent in May from the previous month, compared with market forecasts for a 5.6per cent decline.
Optimism on Monday had been based on strong growth in US pending home sales, bolstering belief that global fuel demand is rising steadily as major economies reopen after coronavirus lockdowns, while the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, known as OPEC+, comply with production cut commitments. -Reuters