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Crude Oil prices fall on the eve of OPEC meeting

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Nigeria's crude oil export threatened as 30 cargoes remain available

The prices of crude oil fell on Wednesday largely due to swelling supply glut and signs of an economic slowdown just a day before a crucial meeting of Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC.

The OPEC meeting is expected to decide on supply cuts.

International Brent crude oil futures were at $61.16 per barrel at 0757 GMT, down 92 cents, or 1.5 per cent, from their last close.

United States West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $52.40 per barrel, down 85 cents, or 1.6 per cent.

The prices had pressures from by the weekly report from the American Petroleum Institute, API, indicating that U.S. crude inventories rose by 5.4 million barrels in the week to November 30, to 448 million barrels, in a sign that U.S. oil markets are in a growing glut.

Read also: FOREX INFRACTIONS: CBN to send EFCC after rogue banks, companies

Official U.S. government oil production and inventory data is due later on Wednesday.

In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia produced a record 11.3 million barrels per day (bpd) in November adding to the swelling glut.

According to Reuters technical commodity analyst, Wang Tao, WTI could soon test support at $51.75 per barrel, while Brent was threatening to drop below $60 per barrel again soon.

China’s government has warned of increasing economic headwinds and as Japan was expected to report another quarter of GDP contraction.

More broadly, the slide in U.S. oil followed a tumble in global stock markets on Tuesday, with investors worried about the threat of a widespread economic slowdown.

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