* Global equities markets fall
* U.S. manufacturing growth slows in January
* Libyan prime minister orders troops to occupied ports
(Updates prices, adds analyst quote; changes byline and dateline, previous LONDON)
NEW YORK, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Crude oil fell $1 on Monday under pressure from continued worries over emerging markets, weak factory data from China, and expectations for lower demand as U.S. refiners move into maintenance season.
Emerging market stocks and currencies fell, while data showed U.S. manufacturing slowed in January, pressuring global equity markets lower and weighing on oil prices.
U.S. oil pared earlier gains, which had narrowed its discount to European Brent oil to its smallest since October.
"Equities are negative and that tends to keep (U.S.) crude oil from getting too far to the upside," said Bob Yawger, director of commodities futures at Mizuho Securities in New York.
U.S. stocks fell on Monday, adding to recent losses after data showed the factory sector in the world's largest economy expanded in January at its slowest pace in eight months.
Brent was down 70 cents to $105.70 a barrel by 11:58 a.m. EST (1658 GMT), having sunk to a near 3-month low of $105.40 earlier in the session. U.S. oil fell $1 to $96.49.
Brent's premium to U.S. crude oil contracted earlier in the session to $8.06, close to the low of $8.04 set on Oct. 18, as some analysts and traders expect data to show a large draw in stocks at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery point for the U.S. oil futures contract.
Market players also turned their attention to refiners moving into maintenance that would curb demand for crude oil. Weakening U.S. oil prices widened the spread between the two benchmarks to more than $9 <CL-LCO1=R> in early afternoon trading.
"I think the market is being turned on its head because we are going into peak refinery turnaround season," said Stephen Schork, editor of the Schork Report in Villanova, Pennsylvania. "Demand is drying up for crude."
U.S. oil refiners are expected to take 800,000 barrels per day (bpd) of capacity off line in the week ending Feb. 7, down from 979,000 bpd the previous week, data from research company IIR showed on Monday.
CHINA WEIGHS, MIDDLE EAST SUPPORTS
Analysts said macro demand issues in China, the world's second largest oil consumer, would continue to weigh on markets globally.
Data released over the weekend showed China's factory growth eased to an expected six-month low in January, according to the official Purchasing Managers' Index by the National Bureau of Statistics.
The potential impact of international political tensions on oil supplies is expected to keep a floor under prices.
The Libyan prime minister said on Monday he ordered troops to move toward oil exporting ports in the east that have been under rebel control for months.
In Iraq, the army intensified its shelling of Falluja in preparation for a ground assault to regain control of the city, which has been under the control of militants for a month.
In Syria, military helicopters dropped more improvised "barrel bombs" on the northern city of Aleppo, a monitoring group said, bringing the death toll to at least 83 people.
Syria is not vital in terms of oil shipments, but markets have been worried that the crisis there could spill across the Middle East to engulf major exporters.
(Additional reporting by Peg Mackey in London and Manash Goswami in Singapore; Editing by Anthony Barker, Dale Hudson and Chris Reese)