U.S. crude oil dipped closer to testing $99 in early trade on Friday, pressured by a jump in inventories, with the benchmark contract facing a weekly decline of more than 1 percent.
Falls were tempered, however, by expectations that U.S. jobs data for April due later in the day will show the strongest rise in employment in five months.
U.S. crude for June delivery fell 15 cents to $99.27 a barrel by 0010 GMT, dropping for the third session in a row and putting it on course for a weekly fall of 1.3 percent.
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