Oil Futures Settle Under $40 a Barrel

By Myra P. SaefongMarketWatch Pulse

Oil futures ended below $40 a barrel on Wednesday, their lowest settlement in more than three months. Comments from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen raised the likelihood of an interest-rate hike by the central bank this month, while government data showed a 10th straight weekly increase in crude supplies. January crude settled at $39.94 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, down $1.91, or 4.6%. That was the lowest settlement since Aug. 26 of this year.

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