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Oil falls on concerns over "fiscal cliff"


08:27, November 13, 2012

NEW YORK, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) -- Crude prices on Monday fell on lingering concerns in the market over U.S. "fiscal cliff".

The market was heavily pressured by worries about a fiscal cliff, which economists warned might drag U.S. economy back to recession in the first half of next year.

If the Congress failed to reach a debt deal, government automatic spending cuts and tax hikes would take effect in Jan. 2013.

Weak data from Japan, the world's third biggest oil consumer, also added the bearish tone. Japan's economy shrank 0.9 percent in the July-September period from the previous quarter, which indicated that the economy might be heading into a mild recession.

The Greek parliament approved its 2013 budget on Sunday, including more austerity programs, which is seen as a key step in reviving its stalled international aid. But German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said the troika of international lenders to Athens was unlikely to deliver its full report in time for the euro zone finance ministers' meeting on Monday, making the future for Greece, a long-time debt-burdened country, unclear.

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