August 15, 2014 / 12:37 AM / 5 years ago

NYMEX-U.S. crude edges down towards $95, demand outlook cloudy

SEOUL, Aug 15 (Reuters) - U.S. crude oil continued its drop towards $95 a barrel on Friday after falling more than $2 a barrel the day before to end at a nearly seven-month low, with weak economic data clouding the outlook for demand.

FUNDAMENTALS

* U.S. crude had edged down 4 cents to $95.54 a barrel by 0011 GMT, after settling down $2.01 at $95.58 in the previous session - the lowest close since Jan. 21 at $94.99.

* Brent crude for October gained 7 cents to $102.14 a barrel after losing $2.99 to settle at $102.07 a barrel. The September contract, which expired on Thursday, ended down $2.27 at $102.01 after dropping as far as $101.92, the lowest since July 2013.

* Germany’s economy shrank in the second quarter and France again failed to conjure up any growth, snuffing out any signs of a recovery in the euro zone which is now also weighed down by tit-for-tat sanctions with Russia.

* The European news came a couple of days after China’s implied oil demand dropped 6 percent in July from June as crude runs fell slightly and the world’s largest energy consumer exported its highest net volume of fuel so far this year.

* In the oil-producing Middle East, Libya is set to resume oil exports from its largest port, Es Sider, in “a few days” after being closed for almost a year by protests, a National Oil Corporation (NOC) official said on Thursday.

* The presidents of Russia, Ukraine and the European Commission have agreed to hold talks on disputes over gas and an EU-Ukraine free trade agreement, in parallel with efforts to stabilise the security situation in Ukraine, the EU said on Thursday.

MARKETS NEWS

* Global equity markets edged higher on Thursday after President Vladimir Putin of Russia sounded a conciliatory note over the crisis in Ukraine, while bond yields in Europe fell to record lows as the euro zone’s recovery stalled in the second quarter.

DATA/EVENTS

* The following data is expected on Friday: (Time in GMT)

1230 U.S. New York Fed manufacturing Aug

1315 U.S. Industrial output July

1355 U.S. Univ of Michigan sentiment index Aug (Reporting by Meeyoung Cho; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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