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Crude futures are close to a two-and-a-half year high

March 02/2011

(ICIS) -- Crude futures are close to a two-and-a-half year high on Wednesday on supply worries triggered by the ongoing turmoil in Libya and an unexpected fall in US crude inventories. At 05:58 GMT, April Brent on Londons ICE futures was trading at $115.89/bbl, up 47 cents/bbl from the previous close after earlier hitting a session high of $116.36/bbl. The Tuesday North Sea benchmark settled at $115.42/bbl, the highest level since 27 August 2008.

Crude prices stayed high amid mounting concerns that continued instability in Libya, which has drastically reduced output from the OPEC member, could spread to other nations in the Middle East and North Africa and threaten the global supply of crude oil.

Other countries in the region also recently experienced unrest including Oman, Bahrain and Iran in recent weeks since the overthrow of Egypts President Hosni Mubarak.

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