U.S crude oil fell on Thursday as the debate for a sustainable price level continued after Saudi Arabia announced deep discounts for the crude it sells to Asian and U.S. buyers in an apparent attempt to defend its market share.
U.S. crude settled 57 cents lower at $66.81 a barrel. Meanwhile, benchmark North Sea Brent crude was last down about 30 cents at $69.75 a barrel, after trading in a wide band of nearly $2.
News that Libya’s El Sharara oil field, one of OPEC’s largest, might be ready to resume output after a pipeline blockage was cleared also weighed on sentiment in an oversupplied market. The El Sharara produced 300,000 barrels per day before it closed last month after clashes between armed groups.
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