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Oil drops to $98 on China economy, U.S. supplies

The price of oil dropped to $98 a barrel Wednesday as the possibility of a deeper economic slowdown in China fed expectations of weaker demand and a report showed a rise in U.S. oil supplies.
By PABLO GORONDI Published: March 13, 2014
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In brief

Oil’s price dips below $100

Oil’s price dropped to $98 a barrel Wednesday as the possibility of a deeper economic slowdown in China fed expectations of weaker demand and a report showed a rise in U.S. oil supplies.

Benchmark U.S. crude for April delivery fell $2.04, or 2 percent, to close at $97.99 a barrel in New York, the first close below $100 in a month.

Brent crude, used to set prices for international varieties of crude, dropped 53 cents to $108.02 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

China’s drop in exports in February fueled worries of a further slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy, which would tamp down demand for energy. China’s economic growth of 7.7 percent last year was the lowest in two decades.

The U.S. Energy Department said U.S. crude oil supplies grew by 6.2 million barrels last week, well above the increase of 2.3 million barrels expected by analysts surveyed by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.

Associated Press