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Crude oil for January delivery declined 55 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $100.44 a barrel at 10:12 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Yesterday, the contract gained 3 cents to $100.99, the highest settlement since Nov. 16. Futures are up 9.9 percent this year.
Brent oil for January settlement fell 17 cents to $109.64 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The euro area’s six AAA rated countries are among nations to be placed on a negative outlook depending on the result of the summit, S&P said yesterday.
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said S&P’s downgrade warning will spur European leaders to ratchet up efforts to resolve the two-year-old debt crisis in Brussels.
The European Union accounted for 16 percent of global oil demand last year, according to BP Plc’s annual Statistical Review of World Energy. The U.S., the world’s biggest oil user, consumed 19.1 million barrels a day, or 21 percent of the total.
Oil climbed earlier as Germany’s Economy Ministry said factory orders rose the most in 19 months in October after three straight declines. Adjusted for seasonal swings and inflation, orders jumped 5.2 percent from September, when they fell 4.6 percent. Economists in a Bloomberg News survey projected a 1 percent gain. Germany is Europe’s biggest economy.
An Energy Department report tomorrow will probably show that U.S. crude oil stockpiles decreased by 1 million barrels last week, according to the median of 11 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News. Inventories of distillate fuel, a category that includes heating oil and diesel, rose 1.1 million barrels, and gasoline supplies gained 1 million barrels, the survey showed.
The industry-funded American Petroleum Institute will release its own supply data at 4:30 p.m. today in Washington.
Oil in the U.S. will average $100 a barrel in 2012 and is more likely to rise above that level than fall below it, ConocoPhillips Chief Executive Officer Jim Mulva said.
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