Money Matters - Simplified

Crude oil prices fall modestly

New York -- Crude oil prices on the New York Mercantile Exchange dropped below $79 per barrel Tuesday, although it is too early to declare a new holding pattern.

The price of light, sweet crude bolted out of a holding pattern between $65 and $72 early in October, but price hikes put on a burst of speed last week, propped up by renewed confidence in equity markets.

The price of crude oil fell 45 cents Tuesday to $78.67 per barrel. Heating oil prices lost 0.0083 cents to $2.039 per gallon. Reformulated gasoline prices shed 0.0175 cents to $1.9702 per gallon. Natural gas prices reached $5.17, up 0.009 cents.

At the pump, the national average price of unleaded gasoline rose Tuesday to $2.577 per gallon, up from Monday's $2.564, AAA said.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International.

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