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World Oil Prices Falling Sharply

  • VOA News

FILE - A ship is docked at a Al-Basra oil platform in the Middle East Gulf, Sept. 21, 2014.

FILE - A ship is docked at a Al-Basra oil platform in the Middle East Gulf, Sept. 21, 2014.

World oil prices dropped to their lowest levels in more than a year Thursday as Saudi Arabia, one of the world's largest oil producers, showed no signs of cutting its production to ease the glut in the global supply.

Riyadh earlier in the week cuts its official crude oil selling price for the fourth month in a row, signaling it is looking to keep its world market share and compete on pricing with other big producers.

The price for Brent crude from the North Sea fell to as low as $91.55 a barrel, it lowest point since June 2012, before recovering by more than $2 a barrel.

A sweet grade of oil traded in the United States, West Texas Intermediate, dropped below $90 a barrel, its lowest point since April 2013, although it marginally recovered in later trading on November contracts.

Analysts predict oil prices could fall further as long as production in major drilling areas across the world is not trimmed.

World oil prices have been falling for several months as Libyan oil production has resumed and the value of the U.S. dollar is at a four-year high against other currencies. The strong U.S. dollar makes oil more expensive for weaker currencies, which in turn cuts demand for oil.

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