The price of crude oil was leveling off from its recent high Monday morning as traders await further cues from this week's economic data.
Light Sweet Crude Oil (WTI) futures for October delivery, eased $0.08 to $98.92 a barrel. Last week, oil rose nearly 3 percent to hit a four-month high after the U.S. Federal Reserve announced the much anticipated additional quantitative easing measures to stimulate growth in the world's largest economy. Prices were also supported by increasing tensions in the Middle East, with the U.S. Ambassador to Libya killed and protests spreading to more locations in the Arab world targeting the U.S.
This morning, the U.S. dollar was lingering around its four-month low versus the euro and sterling. The buck continued to level off from its seven-month low against the yen and ticking higher against the Swiss franc.
In economic news, the euro zone trade surplus rose to EUR 15.6 billion in July from EUR 13.6 billion in June, Eurostat said. In July 2011, the trade surplus totaled EUR 2.1 billion. Exports dropped 2 percent month-on-month in July after rising 2.4 percent in June. Likewise, imports fell 1.2 percent, reversing last month's 0.7 percent rise.
Traders will look to the results of the New York Federal Reserve's empire state manufacturing survey will be out at 8:30 am ET. The headline general business conditions index for September is expected to come in at -2 compared to a reading of -5.9 for August.
During this week focus will be on the National Association of Home Builders' housing market index for September, the National Association of Realtors' existing home sales report, the Commerce Department's housing starts report for August and the results of the regional manufacturing surveys by the New York Federal Reserve and the Philadelphia Federal Reserve.
Also, focus will be on the crude oil inventories data from the API, due out Wednesday after the market hours, and the EIA due out the subsequent day.
by RTT Staff Writer
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