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AKIPRESS.COM - The price of oil slipped below $102 a barrel on Friday, falling for a second day after spiking on lower U.S. inventories and tensions in the Ukraine and the Middle East, according to the Associated Press.
Benchmark U.S. crude for September delivery was down 10 cents to $101.97 at 0555 GMT in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract dropped $1.05 to close at $102.07 a barrel on Thursday.
Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, rose 13 cents to $107.20 in trading on the ICE exchange in London.
Lower-than-expected U.S. crude inventories in a weekly Energy Department report had driven prices up on Wednesday, but expectations of stronger growth in demand were later countered as gasoline supplies were nearly three times larger than predicted.
Still, the price of oil has stayed above $100 a barrel after a civilian jetliner was shot out of the sky last week over a part of eastern Ukraine controlled by pro-Russian separatists and as Israel's invasion of the Gaza Strip added to risks of instability in the Middle East.
In other energies trading on Nymex:
— Wholesale gasoline rose 1.2 cent to $2.825 a gallon.
— Natural gas was little changed at $3.849 per 1,000 cubic feet.
— Heating oil added 0.6 cent to $2.885 a gallon.