West Texas Intermediate crude fell, trimming the biggest weekly increase since June, as the U.S. economy grew less than expected in the first quarter.
Futures dropped 0.7 percent after the Commerce Department said gross domestic product rose at a 2.5 percent annual rate. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected a gain of 3 percent. Oil jumped 5 percent in the past two days on lower-than-expected U.S. jobless claims and a decrease in gasoline stockpiles.
“The GDP number is quite a bit lower than expected,” said Kyle Cooper, director of commodities research at IAF Advisors in Houston. “It’s pretty disappointing. Economic growth is just not very exciting and it’s not conducive to oil demand.”
WTI for June delivery retreated 64 cents to settle at $93 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The volume of all futures traded was 12 percent below the 100-day average for the time of day at 3:35 p.m.