Oil falls as economic outlook grows gloomier

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Oil prices fell on Monday, as concern over the global economy put crude on track for its biggest monthly fall since mid-2016.

Brent crude oil futures were down 34 cents at $77.28 a barrel at 1005 GMT, while US crude futures fell by 30 cents to $67.29.

Even with US sanctions on Iranian exports due to come into force in under a week, oil has lost nearly 7 percent in value this month, the largest percentage decline since July 2016.

Industrial commodities such as crude and copper have been rattled by hefty losses in global equities due to concern over corporate earnings, fears over economic growth amid escalating trade tensions, and a stronger dollar.

Fund managers have cut their bullish positions in crude futures and options for four weeks in a row to their lowest since July 2017, as the demand outlook grows more uncertain.

Data from the InterContinental Exchange and the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission shows combined bullish holdings of Brent and US crude futures and options have fallen by a third in four weeks, to around 572 million barrels.

This position was equivalent to nearly 1.2 billion barrels in January.

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