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Inventories report sends oil prices lower

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by Elaine Frei

The price of crude oil dropped again on Thursday after the release of new inventories figures. While crude oil stockpiles fell by 2.2 million barrels in the week ending September 1 on lower imports, the US inventory of crude oil remained at a healthy 330 million barrels. Meanwhile, gasoline inventories were up by 700,000 barrels last week and distillates stockpiles added 3.1 million barrels. The gains came despite the fact that the demand for gasoline, distillates and jet fuel were all up during the week.

At early afternoon on the New York Mercantile Exchange, October contracts for West Texas Intermediate crude were 21 cents lower to $67.29 per barrel after falling as low as $67.05 per barrel earlier. Brent crude for October delivery dropped 45 cents to $66.48 per barrel by late afternoon; it had been as low as $66.32 earlier in the session.

In the metals markets, gold and silver were both lower on a stronger dollar and lower crude oil prices. Gold fell to $615.75 per troy ounce, a drop of over 3 percent. Silver was trading at $12.50/$12.57 late in the day in London. Among base metals, three-month copper traded at $8,045 per tonne in late trade in London, while aluminium was up by $39 to $2,675.5 per tonne and nickel added $50 to $28,450 per tonne.

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News posted: September 7, 2006

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