Oil trades below $93 on euro crisis concern

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The price of oil dipped below $93 a barrel on Thursday, extending a sharp two-week sell-off, as traders monitored Europe’s debt crisis and its potential impact on global growth.

 

Benchmark oil for June delivery rose 8 cents to $92.89 a barrel in midday trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract hit a day low of $92.51 earlier in the session.

 

In London, Brent crude for July delivery dropped $1.29 at $108.46 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.

 

Crude has plummeted about 12 percent from $106 two weeks ago amid investor worries that economic growth in the U.S. and China will slow more than previously expected. This week, political turmoil in Greece and growing anti-austerity sentiment in Europe have raised fears of a debt default that could hurt economic growth, undermining crude demand.

 

A stronger dollar makes crude more expensive for traders using the euro and other currencies and tends to push down oil prices. On Thursday, the euro was down to $1.2691 from $1.2725 late Wednesday in New York.

 

In other energy futures trading, natural gas fell 8 cents, or 3 percent, to $2.61 per 1,000 cubic feet. The Energy Department says natural gas supplies increased to 2.667 trillion cubic feet last week. That’s nearly 41 percent higher than a year earlier.