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Oil Prices Extend Losses On Growth Worries

Oil prices were mixed on Friday amid growth concerns after the European Commission sharply cut its forecasts for euro zone economic growth this year and next.

Investors also pondered over the prospects for U.S.-China trade talks after U.S. President Donald Trump said he did not plan to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping before the March 1 deadline for reaching a trade deal.

Global benchmark Brent crude rose 0.4 percent to $61.88 a barrel while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were marginally lower at $52.62 per barrel.

The prospects for growth in fuel demand have been clouded by slowing global growth and anxiety over a yet-unresolved U.S.-China trade dispute.

At the same time, OPEC-led supply cuts and the U.S. sanctions against Venezuela are helping limit the downside in the oil market.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and other U.S. officials will travel to Beijing next week to continue the negotiations after U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to a 90-day tariff truce in December.

There is skepticism about the outcome as the two sides have so far made little progress.

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