On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in May traded down 0.21% at USD96.87 a barrel on Tuesday, off from a session high of USD97.22 and up from an earlier session low of USD95.93.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration will release weekly data on crude inventories on Wednesday, and expectations began to build a day earlier that the U.S. is awash in supply, which pushed prices down in afternoon trading on Tuesday.
Still, better-than-expected U.S. factory data supported the commodity.
U.S. factory orders rose 3.0% in February, above expectations for an increase of 2.9% and well above January's 1.0% contraction, according to the Census Bureau.
Many investors remained cautious, however, after the Institute for Supply Management reported on Monday that its purchasing managers index for March fell to 51.3, from 54.2 in February.
Analysts had expected the index to remain unchanged at 54.2.
The figures sent oil falling amid concerns that the U.S. economy continues to battle headwinds amid its recovery and will demand less fuels and energy going forward.
Elsewhere on the ICE Futures Exchange, Brent oil futures for May delivery were down 0.46% at USD110.56 a barrel, up USD13.69 from its U.S. counterpart.