Oil dips below $37 as OPEC pumps most in three years

Oil prices slump to seven-year low
Oil prices slump to seven-year low

Oil fell below $37 a barrel on Thursday, after new data showed OPEC is still pumping like there is no tomorrow.

The mighty oil cartel produced 31.7 million barrels a day in November, its latest monthly report shows. That is the highest output in over three years and 1.7 million barrels a day over its former production ceiling.

OPEC production rose by 230,000 barrels a day last month, according to secondary sources that track OPEC's production levels.

The news pushed oil prices back below $37 a barrel for the second time this week. Last time oil was cheaper than that was in the depths of the Great Recession in February 2009. It reached a peak of nearly $108 per barrel in June 2014.

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OPEC failed to agree on an official output quota last week, leaving production near record highs despite the massive global glut that is keeping oil prices low.

Saudi Arabia, the most powerful member of the cartel, is refusing to cut output in order to defend its market share. It is hoping to squeeze out higher-cost producers in the U.S. and elsewhere.

Less wealthy OPEC members Algeria, Angola, Nigeria and Venezuela, have been lobbying for production cut to lift prices.

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