Brent Slides On Weak Chinese Exports
Brent crude oil lost its momentum on Tuesday morning after demand woes outweighed worries about the ongoing tension in Syria. The commodity traded at $108.18 at 6:10 GMT on Tuesday morning as investors looked to both economic data and news reports for clues about the commodity's future.
CNBC reported that crude oil prices slid more than $1.00 per barrel on Monday following data which showed that Chinese exports had slowed down. Chinese exports unexpectedly fell in February which cast a shadow of doubt over the number two oil consuming nation's demand outlook.
The data confirmed that China's economy is likely facing a period of slowing growth, which was worrisome to investors.
However, Brent prices were underpinned by tension between Ukraine and Russia; where Russian forces continued to tighten their grip on Ukraine's Crimean peninsula. Protesters in Ukraine violently crashed with pro-Russian supporters who claim that the peninsula should be allowed the right to vote on a referendum.
Moving forward investors will have a close eye on the eurozone as the region's member nations make important decisions as to how they will deal with the situation between Ukraine and Russia. The US has threatened to carry out harsh sanctions designed to economically isolate Russia until President Vladimir Putin decides to withdraw his troops, but eurozone nations may have difficulty getting on board with the US' sanctions.
The region relies heavily on Russian natural gas, and will be unable to impose trade restrictions without cutting off its own supplies. In response to Russia's economical grip on Ukraine, US leaders have considered loosening natural gas shipment treaties in an effort to help Ukraine break away from Russian control.
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