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    Oil Falls to $70 a Barrel

    OPEC scrambles to find market balance

    NEW YORK -- For the first time in 14 months, oil dropped below $70 a barrel forcing the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to schedule an emergency meeting in hopes of establishing stability in the market, reported The New York Times.

    The New York Mercantile Exchange reported Friday crude oil for November delivery traded at approximately $73 a barrel, a significant drop from July’s record high price of $145.

    The massive drop is attributed to the failing economy in the states and abroad. AAA reported Friday the national gasoline price is $3.08 a gallon.

    OPEC’s producers, which control 40 percent of global exports, could curb output by about a million barrels a day to try to stem the drop in prices, reported The New York Times.

    Lawrence Eagles, an oil analyst at JPMorgan, told the paper it’s unclear what price range for oil OPEC wants to establish, however, he added the meeting "sends a clear signal that OPEC is concerned about the speed with which oil prices are slipping away from a preferred price of around $80 a barrel."

    On Tuesday, Iran’s oil minister, Gholamhossein Nozari, told reporters, "I think the low price is a real damage to the future of production."

    During a recent interview with reporters, Jeroen van der Veer, the chief executive of Royal Dutch Shell, said the credit freeze has forced some projects to be scaled back, which will have an impact on industry operations.

    "This is a real test," he said during a conference call. “Some people will be overstretched, and there will be some delays in some projects."

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