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Brent stays near 13-month low

Friday, August 15 08:13:32

Brent crude edged up on Friday, helped by weakness in the dollar, but it remained near a 13-month low below $103 a barrel as a shaky European economy fuelled concern about demand in a well-supplied oil market.

Growth in Germany and France ground to a halt in the second quarter. That disappointing data came just days after news that implied oil demand in China, the world's second-largest oil consumer, fell 6 percent in July from June.

October Brent crude edged up 16 cents to $102.23 a barrel by 0702 GMT, but the September contract, which expired on Thursday, had tumbled $2 to settle at $102.01, the lowest for front-month prices since June 2013.

U.S. crude fell 22 cents to $95.36 a barrel.

OPEC's July production was at a five-month high of more than 30 million barrels per day and more output will come from Libya as it reopens eastern oil ports.

Libya is set to resume oil exports from its largest port, Es Sider, in "a few days" after it was closed for almost a year by protests, a National Oil Corporation (NOC) official said on Thursday.

The first oil export in a year from Ras Lanuf port left the country on Tuesday.

In Iraq, a tussle over control in Baghdad ended as Nuri al-Maliki stepped down as prime minister, raising hopes that a new coalition government could quash a Sunni Islamist insurgency in the north.

In Europe, conciliatory comments from Russian President Vladimir Putin over the crisis in Ukraine provided some relief to investors as sanctions imposed on Russia over the Ukraine crisis has hurt trade. (Reuters)

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