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Oil falls, has 1st weekly decline since mid-June
Aggregated Source: Shanghai Daily: Business

THE oil market cooled off this week following some lofty gains.

West Texas Intermediate, the benchmark for US crude, fell 79 cents to close at US$104.70 a barrel yesterday in New York. For the week, the price of oil fell US$3.35, or 3.1 percent, the first weekly decline since mid-June.

China, a major energy consumer, played a big role in this week's decline in the price of crude. Traders were concerned over the country's decision to press ahead with painful economic restructuring and forgo another round of stimulus even though growth has slowed.

Oil is still up US$11, or 12 percent, since June 21, when it fell to US$93.69 a barrel. It broke above US$100 on July 3 for the first time since May 2012 and peaked at slightly more than US$109 on July 19. The rise was mostly due to falling US crude stockpiles and increased interest from financial investors.

Brent, the benchmark for international crudes, fell 48 cents to US$107.17 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

In other trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange:

- Wholesale gasoline rose 3 cents to US$3.04 a gallon.

- Heating oil fell 3 cents to US$3.01 a gallon.

- Natural gas shed 9 cents to US$3.56 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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Copyright Shanghai Daily: Business

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