Oil futures fell Wednesday to settle below $50 a barrel for the first time in a week. Data revealed that U.S. crude supplies fell for the week ended Dec. 2, but some analysts attributed the change to the declines usually seen at year end as companies attempt to cut their taxes on onshore crude stockpiles. Supplies of gasoline and distillates also climbed more than expected. January West Texas Intermediate crude fell $1.16, or 2.3%, to settle at $49.77 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest settlement since Nov. 30, according to FactSet data.
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