Oil at $77 on OPEC's 50th Birthday


"Prices are right where OPEC stated is a reasonable price for now."

Crude oil prices in New York held above $77 per barrel Tuesday as stocks in Asia and Europe were mixed.

On the 50th anniversary of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, prices are right where OPEC has stated publicly is a reasonable price for nowóbetween $70 and $80 per barrel.

Ahead of planned celebrations, OPEC President Abdulla Al Badri said Monday the 12-member oil-producing cartel was seeking stability in pricing.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange Tuesday, light, sweet crude for October delivery dropped $0.03 from a recent settlement to $77.16 per barrel. Reformulated blendstock gasoline shed $0.056 to $1.975 per gallon. Natural gas prices added $0.063 to $4.001 per million British thermal units.

At the pump, the national average price for unleaded gasoline was $2.717 per gallon Tuesday, up from Monday's $2.709, AAA said.

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