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US oil spared as Brent plunges on Libyan supply fears

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Brent crude oil prices tumbled on Monday, on expectations of greater supplies as OPEC producer Libya prepares to reopen a second port, and as traders unwound the spread versus U.S. crude.

Dealers said Brent prices were pressured by news on Monday that Libya, a major producer, lifted force majeure at the eastern oil port of Zueitina, paving the way to restart exports at a second port after a deal with rebels to unblock major terminals.

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The market also digested news that the United States slapped a third round of sanctions on Russian individuals and companies to try to stop President Vladimir Putin from fomenting rebellion in eastern Ukraine.

Among the seven powerful Russians sanctioned was Igor Sechin, head of state energy giant Rosneft.

June Brent fell more than $1, with some traders saying the list of sanctions may have been milder than some had expected, easing concerns about any potential impact on supplies. Prices were down more than a percent near $108, after settling down 75 cents on Friday.

Recovering from earlier losses, U.S. crude for June delivery settled up 24 cents at $100.84. Earlier in the session, it had fallen to $100.38, its lowest since April 7.

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