World oil prices extend losses with dollar strength

SINGAPORE, October 22, 2008 (AFP) – World oil prices weakened in Asian trade Wednesday on renewed worries about energy demand in the face of slowing global growth, dealers said.

New York’s main contract, light sweet crude for December delivery, fell 2.72 dollars to 69.46 dollars a barrel from its close of 72.18 dollars in the United States Tuesday. The contract for November expired Tuesday, closing 3.36 dollars lower at 70.89 dollars.

Brent North Sea crude for December delivery dropped 2.42 dollars to 67.30 dollars. It closed 2.31 dollars weaker on Tuesday at 69.72 dollars.

Crude prices have rallied in recent sessions amid growing signals OPEC is likely to announce plans to cut its production when the oil cartel meets at a specially arranged session in Vienna on Friday.

However, worries about weaker energy consumption as the world’s developed economies hit a weak patch have investors fretting, dealers said.

“Concerns over weakening oil demand have dampened the oil price, even though the OPEC meeting on 24 October is expected to lower production targets,” said David Moore, a Sydney-based commodity strategist with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.