Oil prices dropped below $81 a barrel today aided by a stronger dollar and weak US consumer confidence data, which fanned worries about weaker demand in the world’s top energy user.

For April delivery, US crude fell 81¢ to $80.73 per barrel at 0630 GMT, while London Brent crude dropped 49¢ at $78.90, according to Reuters.

The dollar gained today as fears of more liquidity tightening measures by China’s central bank hit Asian stocks.

Stronger-than-expected US retail sales in February were counterbalanced by a decline in March consumer confidence, pulling down prices.

The market is also looking forward to the outcome of OPEC’s meeting later this week.

No major change in targets is expected, however, as the prices are within the desired change.