Oil retreats on strong dollar, data
Oil prices edged lower on Thursday as dollar strengthened against the euro and worse-than- expected housing data dampened market sentiment, Xinhua reported.
The dollar strengthened against a basket of currencies as the euro edged lower after the European Central Bank decided to leave interest rates in the region at low levels for the foreseeable future. A rising green back usually limits the appeal of crude futures as an alternative investment.
Oil prices also followed stocks, which fluctuated at low levels when oil trading closed. The monthly pending home sales plunged by 7.6 percent, much worse than the one percent increase economists had expected.
Oil prices have been moving between 69 and 84 U.S. dollars a barrel in the past few months, as investors tried to define the strength and sustainability of recovery.
Light, sweet crude for April delivery fell 66 cents to settle at 80.21 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
In London, Brent crude for April settlement fell 57 cents to 78. 68 dollars a barrel on the ICE Futures Exchange.