Oil Down 1% To Near 7-Year Low On Glut, Dollar; Gasoline Jumps


NEW YORK, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Crude oil prices fell 1 percent on Thursday to new lows since 2009 as traders looked beyond a drop in U.S. crude stockpiles to focus on a global supply glut, while a stronger dollar weighed on commodities.

U.S. gasoline futures were the only bright spot on the petroleum complex, rallying on concerns over a refinery outage and possible cuts in production.

Futures of Brent and U.S. crude's West Texas Intermediate (WTI) struck near seven-year lows for a fourth day in a row in continued fallout from an OPEC meeting last week that abandoned price support measures. Unimpressive U.S. government inventory data from Wednesday added to the drag.

In its latest monthly report on Thursday, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries forecast that oil supply from countries outside the group - including United States and Russia - would fall by 380,000 barrels per day (bpd) next year, three times above previous expectations.

But OPEC also struck a bearish chord by saying its group output rose by 230,000 bpd in November to 31.7 million. It left unchanged its forecast for 2016 world oil demand growth at 1.25 million bpd.

OPEC's report "fell easily within (the) range of expectations", Jim Ritterbusch of Chicago-based oil consultancy Ritterbusch & Associates, explaining its lack of positive impact.

He also said the weekly drop of 3.6 million barrels in U.S. crude stocks announced by the government on Wednesday was seen as refiner de-stocking before the end of the U.S. tax year. "Additional U.S. commercial crude stock draws will be shrugged off", he added.


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