Oil falls on supply cut news, Ecuador election result


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Investing.com - Oil futures fell modestly in the early part of Monday's Asian session following mixed supply data from some members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. Ecuador's presidential election results were also seen factoring into oil's price action today.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for April delivery fell 0.18% to USD96.23 per barrel. Surprisingly, oil futures fell 1.25% during Friday's U.S. session despite the release of some decent economic news.

The University of Michigan-Thomson Reuters consumer-sentiment survey rose to an initial February reading of 76.3, up from 73.8 last month. Economists expected a February reading of 75. Federal Reserve Bank of New York's Empire State jumped to 10 this month from -7.8 in January, good for the best reading since May 2012.

Industrial production fell 0.1% in January following a 0.4% increase in December. Economists expected a January increase of 0.2%. For the week, U.S.-traded oil futures posted a small 0.1%, but that was enough to extend an almost three-month in which crude has been finish weeks higher far more often than it finishes to the downside.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and Iraq pared oil exports for the second straight month in December. Iraqi oil exports plunged 10% to 2.35 million barrels a day during the month while Saudi Arabia's shipments fell 1.3% to 7.06 million barrels per day. Saudi Arabia and Iraq are OPEC's two largest producers.

Venezuela, Latin America's largest oil producer, and Nigeria, Africa's top producer, boosted their exports in the final month of 2012. Both are OPEC members.

Speaking of OPEC members, the smallest, Ecuador reelected Rafael Correa as president this weekend. That result could figure into the oil equation in the near-term because Ecuador's production has been in decline to a business environment viewed as hostile to foreign companies.

Elsewhere, Brent crude for April delivery fell 0.14% to USD117.75 per barrel on the ICE Futures Exchange.

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