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Oil dropped almost $4 a barrel on profit-taking and signals that Iran will be more flexible in negotiations over its nuclear program.
Oil dropped below $145 a barrel on Friday, but was still within sight of record highs reached in the previous session when traders bought into the market ahead of a holiday weekend in the United States.
Oil futures closed trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at a record above $145 a barrel, setting their third all-time high in as many consecutive days.
Oil prices hit another record settling price Wednesday, and then followed up on their close by reaching a record high over $144 a barrel in post-settlement trade, as a drop in U.S. crude inventories stoked supply concerns.
Sumitomo Corp, Japan's third-biggest trading house, said on Wednesday its consortium had won preferential rights to build and operate a $6 billion power and water desalination plant in Saudi Arabia.
Oil prices rose on Tuesday on forecasts that global supplies will struggle to keep pace with demand and concerns that tensions between Israel and Iran could lead to a disruption of exports from the OPEC nation.
Oil prices would not ease even if production were raised because speculation and taxes are behind the soaring market, Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah was quoted as saying in a Kuwaiti newspaper on Tuesday.
The dramatic rise in oil prices is a bubble, famous turnaround investor Wilbur Ross told CNBC Monday, adding that there is no apparent supply problem with crude.
Oil slipped off a record high of more than $143 a barrel as weak U.S. demand countered mounting tensions between OPEC nation Iran and Israel.
Oil futures climbed to a new record near $143 a barrel Friday as the dollar weakened against the euro, confirming expectations that the falling greenback, a major factor in crude's stratospheric rise, will extend its decline and add to oil's appeal.
Oil futures shot above $140 Thursday after OPEC's president said oil prices could rise well above $150 a barrel this year and Libya said it may cut oil production.
Oil fell more than $2 on Wednesday after U.S. weekly data showed crude inventories in the world's top consumer rising as high fuel prices continued to erode demand.
U.S. crude oil futures edged up on, seesawing on reports of shut Nigerian output being restored and the threat of a strike shutting other output.
A consortium led by European aerospace group EADS is favorite to win a $1 billion contract to build a border fence shielding Saudi Arabia from Iraq, executives at the Saudi business partner said.
Oil rose as Nigerian supply disruptions and escalating tensions between Israel and Iran outweighed Saudi Arabia's pledge to raise output and keep markets well-supplied.
The Saudis will increase oil production capacity gradually over the next year, a senior advisor to the Minister of Petroleum told CNBC's Melissa Francis in an exclusive interview.
Washington has been talking tough on oil prices on several fronts, calling for new trading regulations on speculators and reopening offshore oil drilling. But it's successful jawboning two of our major allies that seems to have had the biggest impact on prices this week.
The record run-up in oil prices over recent years is igniting fierce debate over the "peak oil" theory — that once the maximum rate of global production is reached, a steep decline ensues. Here we present two squarely opposed viewpoints on the issues from rivals who have been sparring for years.
Saudi Arabia has long been the world’s preeminent oil producer and the kingdom’s royal rulers want to keep it that way. But there is another possible narrative to the kingdom’s likely future – and ours too - which is far less comforting.
Eight-cylinder luxury cars will rumble along Jeddah's highways guzzling cheap Saudi gasoline as energy powers hold emergency talks in the Red Sea port this weekend to brake the free-wheeling rise in oil prices.