NYMEX-Crude steadies near $89, Middle East tensions support

SINGAPORE Mon Dec 3, 2012 6:05am IST

SINGAPORE Dec 3 (Reuters) - U.S. crude steadied near $89 per barrel on Monday, supported by supply worries stemming from tensions in the Middle East, although concerns a sluggish global economy would dent demand growth kept a lid on gains.

FUNDAMENTALS

* U.S. crude inched down 1 cent to $88.90 by 0031 GMT while Brent rose 7 cents to $111.30 per barrel. Both posted gains in November - notching their first monthly rise since August.

* Egypt's President Mohamed Mursi called a Dec. 15 referendum on a new constitution, hoping to end protests over a decree expanding his powers, which plunged the country into its worst crisis since he came to power.

* The U.S. Senate resoundingly approved on Friday expanded sanctions on global trade with Iran's energy and shipping sectors, its latest effort to ratchet up economic pressure on Tehran over its nuclear program.

* Oil prices are expected to fall slightly over the next year as high production feeds softening demand at a time of slowing global economic growth, a Reuters poll shows.

* The euro zone's crisis is far from over and its members must tighten budgets and forge a banking union to leave behind the "fairy world" that allowed problems to grow, ECB President Mario Draghi said on Friday.

* United States President Barack Obama turned up the pressure in "fiscal cliff" talks on Friday, hitting the road to drum up support for his drive to raise taxes on the wealthy and warning Americans that Republicans were offering them "a lump of coal" for Christmas.

* China's economy resumed momentum in November, but there are still signs of over-reliance on the inefficient state sector, purchasing managers' surveys show.

MARKETS NEWS

* The S&P 500 wrapped up its fifth positive month in the last six on Friday, although it ended the day flat as politicians remain at odds about how to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff.

* The euro suffered a bit of a setback on Monday in the wake of Moody's downgrade of the euro zone rescue fund late last week, but the Australian dollar fed off growing optimism about the economic health of its biggest export market, China.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0145 China HSBC Mfg PMI Final Nov

0500 India HSBC Markit Mfg PMI Nov

0500 U.S. Total Vehicle Sales Nov

0843 Italy Markit/ADACI Mfg PMI Nov

0853 Germany Markit/BME Mfg PMI Nov

0858 Euro zone Markit Mfg PMI Nov

1500 U.S. ISM Manufacturing PMI Nov

1500 U.S. Construction spending Oct (Reporting by Ramya Venugopal; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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