Investing.com - Crude oil futures slipped lower during early European trading hours on Friday, as news the Federal Reserve could raise interest rates as soon as next year lent support to the U.S. dollar.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light sweet crude futures for delivery in May traded at USD98.72 a barrel during European morning trade, down 0.19%.
The May contract settled down 0.27% on Thursday to end at USD98.90 a barrel.
Oil futures weakened after the Fed said it would reduce its monthly bond purchases by an additional $10 billion to $55 billion.
At the conclusion of the bank''s two-day policy setting meeting on Wednesday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen indicated that the bank could begin to raise interest rates about six months after the bond-buying program winds up, which is expected to happen this fall.
The Fed statement also emphasized that economic conditions could mean that rates would remain on hold at record lows for some time, even after inflation and employment return to their longer-run trends.
The central bank also updated its forward guidance, discarding the 6.5% unemployment threshold for considering when to increase borrowing costs and said it will look at a wide range of information.
The U.S. dollar also found support after data on Thursday showed that U.S. initial jobless claims rose less-then-expected last week, while a separate report showed that manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia-region expanded at a faster rate than expected in March.
Elsewhere, the U.S. expanded sanctions to 20 more prominent Russians, including allies of Russian President Vladimir Putin, amid mounting tensions over Moscow''s annexation of Crimea.
Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange, Brent oil futures for May delivery dipped 0.04% to trade at USD106.43 a barrel, with the spread between the Brent and crude contracts standing at USD7.71 a barrel.
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