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Oil Prices Ease as Worldwide Supply Grows

Rising commercial oil inventories and declining U.S. demand have pushed oil prices lower on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Crude oil for May delivery fell 69 cents, more than one percent, to $54.15 a barrel in mid-day trading Monday. Prices are more than $3 below the all-time peak of $57.60 hit March 17.

OPEC officials say that with oil prices easing, the cartel does not need to increase its production ceiling of 27.5 million barrels a day.

A former OPEC official says world oil markets are well supplied.

In addition, OPEC member Kuwait says it will boost its crude output by more than 150,000 barrels per day next month (April) when its largest output center reopens. The center was destroyed during the 1990-1991 Iraqi occupation of Kuwait.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.