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updated: 10/1/2012 7:21 AM

Oil falls as gloom pervades economic outlook

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Associated Press

BANGKOK -- Oil prices fell on expectations for weaker demand after two closely watched surveys underscored enduring global economic weakness.

Benchmark oil for November delivery was down 12 cents to $92.07 per barrel at midday Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 34 cents to finish at $92.19 per barrel on the Nymex on Friday.

Brent crude was down 21 cents to $112.18 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

Japan's central bank on Monday released a survey that shows deepening pessimism over the economy among the country's big manufacturers.

The Bank of Japan's quarterly "tankan" index was minus 3, a worsening from the previous quarter's minus 1.

The survey showed pessimism over the prospects for both domestic and global demand given weak growth in China, the U.S. and Europe.

Meanwhile, a survey by the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing said its monthly index of manufacturing activity stood at 49.8 points on a 100-point scale. Numbers below 50 indicate a contraction. China's economic growth fell to a three-year low of 7.6 percent in the quarter ending in June.

Traders are now looking to upcoming jobs data out of the U.S. for a read on the health of the world's No. 1 economy.

"With Wednesday's presidential debates and the approaching election, we expect all eyes will be on Friday's non-farm payrolls data," said oil analyst Stephen Schork in an email commentary.

In other energy futures trading:

-- Heating oil fell 1.4 cents to $3.145 per gallon.

-- Wholesale gasoline rose 1 cent to $2.93 per gallon.

-- Natural gas rose 6.6 cents to $3.386 per thousand cubic feet.

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