Oil Falls to Four-Month Low on European Votes, U.S. Jobs


Oil fell to the lowest level in more than four months after European elections stoked speculation that austerity efforts will be derailed and weaker-than-expected jobs data underscored concern the US Economy may falter.

Futures slumped as much as 3.2 percent to the lowest intraday price since Dec. 20th, extending a 4 percent drop on May 4th after U.S. payrolls rose by the least in six months. Euro-region services and manufacturing output contracted in April, a purchasing managers index showed. France elected Socialist Francois Hollande as president and Greek voters flocked to anti- bailout parties.

Crude for June delivery plunged as much as $3.15 to $95.34 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $97.20 at 2:57 p.m. Singapore time. The contract decreased $4.05 to $98.49 on May 4th, the lowest close since February 7th. Prices slipped 6.1 percent last week, the biggest weekly drop since September.

Brent oil for June settlement slid 66 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $112.52 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The European benchmark contract’s Premium to West Texas Intermediate was at $15.32, up from $14.69 on May 4th.

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