Crude oil prices fell below $70 a barrel on Thursday, after a government report showing another big build in energy stocks reinforced ideas drivers are still cutting back due to the uncertain economic outlook.
The swift drop of more than $5 a barrel in crude took prices to their lowest level since June 2007.
The government said crude inventories rose 5.6 million barrels in the latest week, nearby three times the estimate floating around before the report. Gasoline stocks were up 7 million barrels, despite a big break in retail prices that took the average at the pump down 33 cents in the latest week. Traders had anticipated a jump of only 2.9 million.
The only negative surprise in the report came in distillates, which fell 500,000 barrels — traders expected an increase of about that amount. Overall distillate inventories remain below five-year lows. To read Bryce Knorr's complete energy review, click HERE.