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Oil prices fall in Asian trade

Crude prices were down in Asia today as analysts said losses in equities markets compounded fears over weak oil fundamentals amid ongoing concerns about the global economy.

business Updated: Aug 24, 2010 09:09 IST

Crude prices were down in Asia on Tuesday as analysts said losses in equities markets compounded fears over weak oil fundamentals amid ongoing concerns about the global economy.

New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in October, fell 35 cents to 72.75 dollars a barrel.

London's Brent North Sea crude for October slipped 30 cents to 73.32 dollars.

A host of factors appeared to be working against crude prices, said Victor Shum, senior principal of Purvin and Gertz energy consultants in Singapore.

"The shaky global economy continues to put pressure on crude prices and the pullback in the US equities market yesterday has also contributed to oil prices coming down," he said.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.38 percent to 10,174.41 late Monday.

Japanese shares dropped below the 9,000-point level for the first time since May 2009 shortly after opening Tuesday.

Singapore, Hong Kong and South Korean equities markets were also down in early trade.

The euro retreated against the greenback Tuesday, with one euro buying 1.2632 US dollars compared with 1.2654 dollars late on Monday.

Weak gasoline demand during the US summer driving season, which is due to end in two weeks, also painted a grim picture of oil fundamentals, he added.

"The sentiment in the market is therefore quite bearish, forcing many investors to sell," Shum stated.

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