Crude oil prices retreated sharply during late morning trade in the domestic market on Monday as investors and speculators exited positions in the energy commodity after China, the world's second biggest oil consumer, cut its growth rate for last year, a sign that the economic slowdown in the country is worse than previously thought, darkening the demand outlook for the fuel.
China cut its economic growth for 2014 to 7.3 per cent from 7.4 per cent reported earlier.
Meanwhile, a slowdown in the pace of hiring in the US signaled slight weakness in the labour market recovery in the world's biggest economy, clouding the demand outlook for the fuel. Non-farm payrolls in the US, climbed by 173,000 in August, compared to an upwardly revised 245,000 gain in July, and below expectations of a 217,000 rise.
At the MCX, Crude oil futures, for the September 2015 contract, is trading at Rs 3,067 per barrel, down by 1.38 per cent, after opening at Rs 3,093, against the previous close price of Rs 3,110. It touched an intraday low of Rs 3,044. (At 11:35 AM).