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Oil falls on weak China manufacturing

Associated Press Modified: September 3, 2012 at 8:15 am •  Published: September 3, 2012

LONDON (AP) — Oil prices fell Monday after weaker-than-expected manufacturing data from China intensified concerns about the global economy.

Benchmark oil for October delivery was down 12 cents at $96.35 a barrel in early afternoon trading in London in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose $1.85 to finish at $96.47 per barrel Friday in New York.

Brent crude for October delivery was up 1 cent to $114.59 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

A report released Saturday by the state-authorized China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing said its purchasing managers' index, a measure of manufacturing activity, fell to 49.2 in August from July's 50.1. Numbers below 50 indicate activity is contracting.

That was a nine-month low, according to analysts at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, who said in a market commentary that investors need to be prepared for worsening data about Chinese inflation, industrial production, retail sales and trade.

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