Price of oil drops 1.6%
The price of oil fell 1.6 percent Tuesday to just below $100 a barrel, dented by soft Chinese manufacturing figures and expectations of another increase in U.S. crude stockpiles.
Benchmark U.S. crude for May delivery was down $1.61 to $99.97 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to set prices for international varieties of oil used by many U.S. refineries, was down $1.72 to $106.04 a barrel in London.
Data showing weak manufacturing growth in China suggested oil demand growth could slow at the same time world supplies remain ample. Also, analysts say, tensions between Russia and Ukraine appeared to be easing somewhat, making it less likely that sanctions that could disrupt world oil supplies will be adopted.
Crude stocks have risen 10 weeks in a row, adding 32 million barrels between mid-January and March 21. The Energy Department’s Energy Information Administration report will be out Wednesday.
The average retail price of gasoline rose less than a penny to $3.56 per gallon.