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Oil Futures Settle Lower On Demand Growth Concerns

Crude oil futures edged lower on Monday, as concerns about energy demand growth outweighed somewhat positive factory output and retail sales data out of China.

Reports about Hurricane Barry being downgraded to a tropical depression and forecast that it might weaken further as it moves Arkansas dragged down the commodity.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for August ended down $0.63, or about 1.1%, at $59.58 a barrel.

Meanwhile, Barry, which was downgraded from a tropical storm to a tropical depression, is expected to weaken further as it moves over Arkansas.

A report from the Energy Information Administration said crude oil production from major U.S. shale plays is forecast to climb by 49,000 barrels a day in August to 8.546 million barrels a day.

There is also the likelihood of oil output from Permian Basin rising by about 34,000 barrels a day next month.

In economic news from China, economic growth slowed to 6.2% in the second quarter in the world's second largest economy, helping raise expectations that Beijing will roll out more stimulus soon to ward off a sharper downturn.

Annual growth in industrial production advanced more-than-expected to 6.3% from 5% in May, showing the fastest growth in three months.

Likewise, retail sales grew at a faster pace of 9.8% after rising 8.6% a month ago. Economists had forecast an 8.5% increase for June.

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