NYMEX-Crude steadies near $89 as US woes offset Middle East tensions

SINGAPORE Tue Dec 4, 2012 5:51am IST

SINGAPORE Dec 4 (Reuters) - U.S. crude held around $89 per barrel in early Asian trade on Tuesday, as weak manufacturing data from the United States and worries over its fiscal deficit offset supply concerns caused by tensions in the Middle East.

FUNDAMENTALS

* U.S. crude futures fell 8 cents to $89.01 per barrel at 0006 GMT after topping $90 per barrel in the previous session.

* U.S. Republicans proposed steep spending cuts on Monday and gave no ground on a higher tax plan for wealthy citizen, suggesting that plans to avert the "fiscal cliff" may lean more towards tightening the purse strings.

* U.S. manufacturing contracted to a three-year low in November on worries over the fiscal deficit negotiations and a delayed impact of Hurricane Sandy.

* The 20-month old conflict in Syria worsened after the government spokesman fled the country and the United Nations announced that it was withdrawing all non-essential staff from the Middle Eastern country.

* Israel rejected criticism from the U.S. and Europe of its plans to expand its settlements after the United Nations' de facto recognition of Palestine as a state.

* U.S. commercial crude oil stockpiles likely rose marginally last week while gasoline stockpiles were expected to show larger builds, a preliminary Reuters poll of six analysts showed on Monday.

MARKETS NEWS

* U.S. stocks struggled to extend the previous week's gains, dropping on Monday as disappointing U.S. factory numbers dampened optimism about China's economic growth.

* The euro climbed for the fourth straight session against the dollar on Monday to touch a six-week high as news from Spain and Greece allayed concerns about those debt-burdened countries, while data from China eased worries about global economic growth.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0330 Australia RBA cash rate Dec

1000 Euro zone Producer prices Oct

1100 Brazil Industrial output Oct

1245 U.S. ICSC weekly chain store sales

1355 U.S. Redbook weekly retail sales

1445 U.S. ISM-New York index Nov

2130 U.S. API weekly crude stocks (Reporting by Ramya Venugopal; Editing by Ed Davies)

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