Oil Futures Settle Under $45 a Barrel

By Myra P. Saefong Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Oil futures settled under $45 a barrel on Thursday as traders fretted over ample U.S. stocks of gasoline and a recent slowdown in domestic production declines. Losses in the last half hour of trading accelerated, following sharper losses in the stock market, said Phil Flynn, senior market analyst at Price Futures Group. "Also, talk that Libya might restart its export terminal," took some support away from oil, he said. September WTI crude fell by $1, or 2.2%, to settle at $44.75 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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