Crude oil futures fell on Friday after government reports showed lower U.S. job growth which may reduce oil demand.

The report from the Labor Department said the U.S. jobless rate rose to 5 percent in December, more than the 4.8 percent analysts expected.

Employers created 18,000 jobs last month, lower than analysts' expectations of 70,000. It is the highest rate in more than two years.

U.S crude dropped $1.49, or 1.5 percent to $97.69 at 4:52 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. London Brent crude lost 82 cents, or 0.84 percent to $96.68.

Adding to price pressure, Mexico's government said today that it will reopen its main oil export ports which had been closed several days because of weather difficulties.

An economic slowdown in the U.S., the largest consumer of oil, may weaken the value of the U.S. dollar. However those declines in the dollar can reinforce oil, making commodities cheaper for buyers outside the U.S.

Friday's losses come after oil reached $100.09 on Thursday. Other energy futures such as heating oil and natural gas also fell on Friday.