The crude oil market traded lower during the initial morning hours, weighed down by European debt uncertainty, weakness in global equity markets and a rally in the US dollar. New leadership in Greece and inability to form a new government threaten recent austerity reforms in the country and renewed concerns over the European debt crisis. Added to the European debt concern is building evidence that both European and US economic growth appears to be slowing from the pace seen during the first quarter. While global oil demand has come under pressure from slowing economic growth, the supply situation is building. Comments from Saudi Arabia's oil minister this morning indicated that the country was pumping at its highest rate in recent years and was also building strategic supplies in case of supply disruptions. The supply situation in the US continues to build, with expectations for this week's inventory data to show its seventh-consecutive weekly increase.
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