Oil price tumbles as unemployment claims rise

NEW YORK (AP) — Oil is tumbling more than 3 percent after the government reported a jump in applications for unemployment benefits.

The Labor Department report added to growing concerns about weaker oil and gasoline demand in the U.S. Industry and government surveys have indicated that Americans are buying less fuel as pump prices rise.

The rise in claims for unemployment benefits suggests that fewer people are driving to work. That should depress gasoline demand even further, analysts say.

Benchmark crude dropped $3.56 to $105.70 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Retail gasoline prices rose for the 44th consecutive day to a national average of $3.985 per gallon.

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