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Published: Thursday, 9/22/2011

Fears of slow growth push oil prices to lowest level in a month


NEW YORK — Oil prices are down sharply on worries the economy could slow further.

Benchmark crude on Thursday plunged $5.16, or 6 percent, to $80.76 per barrel in New York. It hasn't been that low since Aug. 19. Brent crude fell $4.62, or 4 percent, to $105.74 in London.

Prices fell after government officials warned they are worried about the anemic U.S. economy. The Federal Reserve said indicators point to continued weakness in the job market and only modest increases in household spending. And the departing chief economist of the European Central Bank said heavy government debts threatened the euro currency.

Meanwhile, U.S. gasoline prices fell more than a penny overnight to $3.556 per gallon.

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