Crude prices down in Asian trade on profit taking

14:52 | 21/10/2010
SINGAPORE, October 21, 2010 - Oil prices were down in Asian trade Thursday, hovering around $82 as traders took profits from a rally the day before, analysts said.

New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in December, shed 46 cents to $82.09.

Brent North Sea crude for December delivery dipped 34 cents to $83.26 .

Prices were retreating following a crude rally Wednesday, said Serene Lim, oil and gas analyst from ANZ bank in Singapore.

"I think it could likely be profit-taking today," she said of the price fall.

Crude markets had jumped on Wednesday on a weaker dollar and a lower-than-expected rise in US crude inventories.

Prices were also constrained by the $83 price ceiling, which Lim described as a "very strong resistance level".

Traders were eyeing the release of Asian economic titan China's third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) and industrial production figures for market leads, Lim added.

China said Thursday its economy posted robust, albeit slightly slower, growth in the third quarter after a crackdown on soaring property prices and bank lending had less impact than expected.

Consumer prices rose at their fastest pace in nearly two years in September, official data showed -- an apparent explanation for Beijing's decision this week to hike interest rates for the first time since 2007.


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