Brent crude oil lost some of its momentum on Tuesday morning after eurozone concerns moved to the forefront and overshadowed positive growth in China. The commodity traded at 118.08 at 7:30 GMT on Tuesday.
After four weeks of gains driven by confidence in the global economy, Brent pulled back as investors worried about the state of the eurozone.
Although China recently released promising figures suggesting that the world's number two oil consumer was on the road to recovery, the eurozone's political and financial trouble capped gains and weighed on prices.
A political scandal in Spain has threatened to divide the government and create an unstable environment that threatens to topple the already fragile economy. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has been accused of being involved in an illegal payment scheme, causing many to call for his resignation.
Politics elsewhere in the region are also heightening fears as looming Italian elections have become a closer race than expected. After former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi closed the gap in last week's polls, many are concerned he will be re-elected and stand in the way of the region's recovery efforts.
According to CNBC, Germany, France and Italy are expected to release their quarterly GDP figures this week; something most are expecting to drag Brent prices down. All three are expected to show contractions, a troubling indication from three of the largest eurozone economies.
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