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Crude futures rebound after wild swing
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08:29, November 14, 2008

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Crude prices ended higher after a wild swing Thursday following a surge from stock markets.

Light, sweet crude for December delivery rose 2.08 U.S. dollars to settle at 58.24 dollars on the New York Mercantile Exchange after dipping as low as 54.67 dollars.

"The price of crude was traded in positive territory following the most recent inventory report from the Department of Energy," Wall Street Strategies' senior research analyst Conley Turner told Xinhua.

The department reported that crude inventories rose by 22,000 barrels for the week ended Nov. 7. This trailed the much anticipated build of 1 million barrels. Gasoline stockpiles increased by 2 million barrels, and supplies of distillates rose by 600,000 barrels.

"The price of the commodity had also found some temporary stability in the wake of reports that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is considering scheduling an emergency meeting in order to adjust output," said the analyst.

The cartel, which cut production quotas by 1.5 million barrels per day last month, may launch an urgent meeting to curb output for the second time late this year.

The Labor Department reported Thursday that jobless claims last week increased by 32,000 to a seasonally adjusted 516,000, a level not seen since just after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Meanwhile, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) declared the United States, Europe and Japan are in a recession, saying the U.S. economy would contract next year by 0.9 percent, Japan's by 0.1 percent and the euro area by 0.5 percent.

For the fourth quarter, the organization said its 30 member countries would likely see a contraction of 1.4 percent on a year-on-year basis, with the United States down 2.8 percent, and Japan and the euro area 1 percent lower.

The International Energy Agency cut its demand forecast Thursday, saying global oil demand to average 86.2 million barrels a day this year, almost flat compared with 2007, and 86.5 million barrels a day next year. Oil demand within the 30 OECD countries now is forecast to fall by 2.7 percent this year and by 1.6 percent in 2009.

"As it stands, the path of least resistance for oil prices appears to be down as the global economy slows and thereby causing a slackening in demand," said Turner.

"It is conceivable that the price of the commodity can crack 50dollars per barrel on the downside and even hit 40 dollars at some point. Rest assured the path of least resistance is down at this point," he added. "The pendulum swung to the extreme on the way up and is apt to do so on the way down."

In London, December Brent crude fell 38 cents to settle at 51.99 dollars a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange after hit a three-year low of 50.60 dollars earlier in the day.

Source: Xinhua

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