SINGAPORE: Oil was lower in Asia Friday as economic growth in China, the world's largest energy consumer, slowed to its lowest level in three years in the second quarter, analysts said.
New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in August, fell seven cents to $86.01 a barrel in the afternoon and Brent North Sea crude for August delivery shed 16 cents to $100.91.
Traders were unimpressed by China's GDP numbers despite the fact they met analyst expectations of 7.6 per cent growth, said Justin Harper, market strategist for IG Markets Singapore.
“The figures may well come in at expectations, but these expectations have been gradually slipping in the lead up to this morning's release,” he said in a commentary.
“What's bad for China is bad for Asia and with economic growth now at its lowest for three years more warning signs are sounding.”
China's 7.6 per cent second-quarter growth was the slowest since 6.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2009 when China and the rest of the world were struggling to emerge from the financial crisis.
The fall dragged growth for the world's second-largest economy to 7.8 per cent for the first half of the year, China's National Bureau of Statistics said.