Despite coming off lower levels during the latter part of the day’s session, crude oil futures ended on a weak note on Tuesday.
Profit taking after recent strong gains, and data showing a slowdown in global manufacturing activity contributed to the drop in oil prices.
A firm dollar weighed as well on oil prices.
West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for September ended lower by $0.43 at $81.37 a barrel.
Brent crude futures were down $0.44 or 0.52% at $84.99 a barrel a little while ago.
In U.S. economic news, a report released by the Institute for Supply Management showed U.S. manufacturing activity contracted for the ninth consecutive month in July.
The ISM said its manufacturing PMI crept up to 46.4 in July from 46.0 in June, but a reading below 50 continues to indicate contraction. Economists had expected the index to inch up to 46.8.
The Commerce Department also released a report showing construction spending rose by slightly less than expected in the month of June.
In Asia, a private survey showed today that factory activity in China, the world’s largest importer of crude, fell into contraction territory for the first time since April.
Another report showed that average new home prices in 100 Chinese cities fell for a third consecutive month in July.
Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Vietnam also saw manufacturing activity contracting in July, raising fresh concerns about Asia’s fragile economic recovery.
In Europe, the HCOB Eurozone Manufacturing PMI fell to 42.7 in July from 43.4 in the previous month, marking the lowest in three years.
U.K. factory output fell at the fastest pace in seven months in July, hit by higher interest rates while British retail sales fell in July at the fastest rate since April 2022, separate reports showed.
Investors await weekly oil reports from the American Petroleum Institute (API) and U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). The API data is due later today, while the EIA will release its weekly inventory data on Wedneday.
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