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June 14, 2021, 2:57 p.m. EDT

U.S. oil futures edge lower as traders eye demand

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By Myra P. Saefong

U.S. oil futures settled slightly lower on Monday as traders continued to eye prospects for energy demand. In a report issued last week, the International Energy Agency said it expects oil demand to return to pre-pandemic levels before the end of 2022, and that's "ahead of previous predictions," said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK. "Vehicle use is starting to return to pre-pandemic use in the U.S. and Canada, while in the U.K. it already has returned to levels just prior to the pandemic, as less people use public transport and use their own vehicles to move around," he said. "While this is likely to see higher gasoline demand, this should be offset to some extent by lower demand for aviation fuel due to there being less air travel." Meanwhile, "talk of Iranian sanctions being lifted may well be acting as a bit of a headwind" for oil prices, Hewson said. West Texas Intermediate oil for July delivery fell 3 cents, or 0.04%, to settle at $70.88 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after trading as high as $71.78.

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