Crude Falls $28 In Less Than A Month

NEW YORK – Crude oil futures prices ended lower on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The near-month contract for the benchmark grade fell $2.24 — closing at $119.17 a barrel.

Oil prices sank as low as $118 a barrel Tuesday on the growing belief that a U.S. economic slowdown and high energy costs are curbing consumer demand for gasoline and other petroleum products.

Crude has now fallen $28, or 19 percent, since reaching a trading high of $147.27 on July 11th.

A day after plunging as much as $5 a barrel in a dramatic sell-off, crude continued its downward trend Tusday as traders sold oil contracts on the belief that prices are still too high in relation to demand and have further room to fall.

The dollar’s gains against the euro has also contributed to oil’s decline by making oil and other commodities less attractive to investors seeking a hedge against inflation and dollar weakness.