Oil slid after a government report showed U.S. crude inventories grew by the most in six months.
West Texas Intermediate futures for December delivery ended at the lowest settlement in almost three weeks. Inventories expanded in the world’s biggest oil consumer by 8.03 million barrels last week, the Energy Information Administration said. A Bloomberg survey forecast a gain of 3.75 million. Refineries processed more crude for the first time in five weeks.
Oil failed to sustain a gain above $50 a barrel earlier this month amid signs the market surplus will persist as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries continues to pump above its target. U.S. stockpiles remain more than 100 million barrels higher than the five-year seasonal average even as output falls and drilling rigs are idled.
December WTI declined $1.09, or 2.4 percent, to $45.20 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest settlement for front-month futures since Oct. 1.