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Crude oil prices declined sharply on Wednesday after data showed a larger than expected increase in U.S. crude stockpiles in the week ended October 22nd.

Oil prices were also weighed down by prospects of Iran freeing itself from U.S. sanctions and start selling oil to major importers again.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for December ended down by $1.99 or about 2.35% at $82.66 a barrel.

Brent crude futures were down $1.70 or 2.01% at $83.95 a barrel a little while ago.

Data released by U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) this morning showed crude oil inventories increased by about 4.3 million barrels last week, more than twice the expected increase of 1.9 million barrels.

Gasoline stocks fell by nearly 2 million barrels last week, while distillate inventories dropped by about 432,000 barrels.

The American Petroleum Institute said late Tuesday that crude oil inventories rose 2.3 million barrels in the week ending Oct. 22, while analysts had expected a 1.9 million barrel gain.

Gasoline inventories rose by 500,000 barrels for the week and distillate stocks increased by 986,000 barrels, compared with a forecast for both to drop.

Crude stocks at the Cushing, Okla., storage hub, meanwhile, fell by 3.7 million barrels for the week.


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