The American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday said U.S. crude-oil inventories fell by 3.9 million barrels last week, according to news reports. The industry group also said that gasoline stocks rose by 7 million barrels, while distillate stocks rose 3.7 million barrels. Traders watch the API data for clues to the Energy Information Administration's weekly inventories data, which is due Wednesday morning. Earlier, oil futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange settled sharply lower after briefly trading below $30 a barrel for the first time since December 2003.
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