Oil slightly lower ahead of China GDP report

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Investing.com - Oil futures traded modestly lower in the early part of Monday's Asian session ahead of the second-quarter reading on Chinese GDP expected out later in the session.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for August delivery fell 0.24% to USD105.30 per barrel in Asian trading Monday after soaring .3% Friday to settle the week at USD105.95 a barrel by close of trade.

On the week, Nymex oil futures advanced 2.3%, the third consecutive weekly gain. Traders boosted oil following a pair of decent economic reports out of the U.S.

In U.S. economic news published last Friday, a Labor Department report showed U.S. wholesale prices rose 0.8% last month, the biggest gain since September 2012. That follows a 0.5% increase in May. Economists expected a June increase of 0.5%.

The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary index of consumer sentiment fell to 83.9 in July from 84.1 in June. Economists expected an initial July reading of 84.7. The U.S. is the world's largest oil consumer.

Traders will now turn their attention to the China GDP report. Various banks have been paring their 2013 GDP growth targets for the world's second-largest economy amid a spate of disappointing data points and Monday's GDP reading could go a long way to affirming investors' skittishness about Chinese equities.

Recently, Macquarie Group slashed its 2013 forecast for Chinese GDP growth to 6.9% from 7.5%, the government target. China is the world's second-largest oil consumer.

Elsewhere, OPEC member Kuwait gave Egypt $200 million worth of oil to help with recovery efforts in the North African nation. Separately, press reports revealed Nigeria is now the largest supplier of oil to India.

Meanwhile, Brent futures for September delivery inched down 0.03% to USD107.90 per barrel on the ICE Futures Exchange.


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