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Oil falls as euro zone woes pressure commodities

NEW YORK: Oil prices fell on Monday as concerns about the euro zone sovereign debt crisis sent investors out of commodities and into safer havens.The Reuters-Jefferies CRB index, a global benchmark for commodities, fell one percent and equities fell as the dollar surged to a two-month high against the euro as traders weighed heightened risks...

SAMAA | - Posted: May 23, 2011 | Last Updated: 10 years ago
SAMAA |
Posted: May 23, 2011 | Last Updated: 10 years ago
Oil falls as euro zone woes pressure commodities

NEW YORK: Oil prices fell on Monday as concerns about the euro zone sovereign debt crisis sent investors out of commodities and into safer havens.The Reuters-Jefferies CRB index, a global benchmark for commodities, fell one percent and equities fell as the dollar surged to a two-month high against the euro as traders weighed heightened risks in Spain and Greece and fresh concerns over Italy.”The euro zone appears to have triggered this morning's sell-off,” Jim Ritterbusch, president at Ritterbusch & Associates in Galena, Illinois, said in a research note.Early pressure on oil prices came from data showing China's factories expanded at their slowest pace in 10 months, adding to evidence that the economy is moderating as a tighter policy starts to bite.Brent crude for July delivery fell $2.35 to $110.04 a barrel by 12:31 p.m. EDT (1631 GMT), after falling as low as $108.58 and dipping below the 100-day moving average of $110.45.U.S. crude dropped $2.50 to $97.60 a barrel, hitting a low of $96.37 and again pushing below the 100-day moving average early. Investors eyeing support above the $94.63 low for May and the 200-day moving average of $90.05.Volumes for U.S. crude were light, down 59 percent below the 30-day moving average just after noon and lagging Brent levels. Brent volumes trailed the 30-day average by 37 percent.Investors sought safer havens after a weekend wipe-out of Spain's ruling Socialists in regional and municipal elections raised fears of potential clashes over deficit curbs between central and local government as Madrid fights to avoid a bailout.Additional concerns came after Italy, which has the euro zone's biggest debt pile in absolute terms, was hit by credit ratings agency Standard & Poor's decision on Saturday to cut its outlook to “negative” from “stable”.Fitch Ratings cut Greece's debt rating by three notches on Friday and rival Standard & Poor's cut its outlook for Italy to “negative” from “stable” on Saturday. AGENCIES

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