If global stocks had a bad month in October, oil endured an equally torrid start to the fourth quarter. Crude prices roared higher in 2017 and for the most of 2018. Coming off a low around $45 a barrel for Brent crude in June 2017, prices rose clear of $80 by the start of October this year. Since then the market has eased, with the price of Brent, the international benchmark, retreating by around 15 per cent over the month to the $72-a-barrel region.
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