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Oil complex settles lower amid mixed US macro data


NYMEX crude settled 87 cents lower at $102.71/b Friday in light volume trading amid lackluster US macroeconomic data.

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NYMEX June product contracts both settled lower upon expiry, led by June ULSD futures, which fell 3.44 cents to end at $2.8846/gal. June RBOB fell 1.71 cents to settle at $2.9965/gal.

July ULSD fell 3.17 cents to settle at $2.8882/gal, while July RBOB dropped 2.39 cents to settle at $2.9719/gal.

US macroeconomic data Friday was mixed, with Chicago PMI -- a key manufacturing index -- beating expectations, coming in at 65.5 for May, up from 63 in April. But the Michigan Consumer Sentiment index left a little to be desired, coming in slightly higher at 81.9 in May, but missing economists expectations for a 82.5 reading.

"I think that we might be seeing some macro reaction today," Oil Outlooks President Carl Larry said. "And this could be knocking gasoline and diesel demand."

Products also likely fell on news that Marathon Petroleum expects a 256,000 b/d crude unit at its Garyville, Louisiana, refinery to be back online by mid-June, with no "significant impact" to refinery throughputs following tornado-inflicted damage Wednesday (See story, 1717 GMT).

Citi Futures Perspective energy analyst Tim Evans early on chalked lower levels up to a bout of pre-weekend liquidation.

"June heating oil and RBOB gasoline futures expire today, contributing to the focus on book squaring," Evans said in a note. "Brent crude oil may be easing on US confirmation that Russia has withdrawn a majority of its troops from positions close to the Ukrainian border."

ICE July Brent settled 56 cents lower at $109.41/b.

--James Bambino,
--Edited by Richard Rubin,