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Oil prices declined today as investors wait for the US Federal Reserve’s policy meeting, which is expected to give hints on its economic stimulus plans; however, losses were restricted by civil unrests in both Egypt and Libya.

Brent crude fell 69 cents to $109.21 a barrel, while US oil slid 77 cents to settle at $106.33, reported Reuters.

On 21 August 2013, the central bank will hold its latest policy meeting, which is expected to provide indications on when stimulus tapering could begin.

A Reuters survey showed that US crude inventories fell by 1.4 million barrels last week.

Both the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) are due to release their stockpile data.

However, athough Egypt is not a major oil producer, investors fear that unrest in the country could spread across the Middle East, which produces the majority of the world’s oil.

Forced majeure on some oil exports and weeks of supply disruptions compelled Libya to suspend contractual obligations.

Unrest crippled the country’s oil production and brought exports to their lowest levels since the 2011 civil war.


Image: Fed’s stimulus tapering concerns impacted oil prices. Photo: courtesy of Freedigitalphotos.

Energy