Price of oil settles at less than $50 per barrel


WALL STREET JOURNAL: Oil prices continued to trend downward on Thursday.

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WALL STREET JOURNAL: Oil prices continued to trend downward on Thursday.

Light, sweet crude for February delivery, the U.S. benchmark, was recently down 84 cents, or 1.7% at $47.64 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude for February delivery was down 41 cents, or 0.8%, at $49.45 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange. Both benchmarks had fallen to about $47 a barrel in early trading and then briefly spiked to around $51 just before 9 a.m. EST.

Oil markets have fallen by more than half since their June peak, as fears of oversupply of crude coupled with tepid demand engulfed the market. The market has fallen so far that it is vulnerable to people trying to pick a bottom, which has created volatile swings in recent months.

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