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Oil Report

UPDATE 1-US CFTC says to unveil crude oil enforcement case

(Adds background on investigation, prices)

HOUSTON, July 24 (Reuters) - The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission will announce the results of an enforcement case related to its nationwide probe of crude oil markets, the agency said Thursday.

“The CFTC will host a press conference to provide the details of an enforcement case related to the crude oil and other energy markets,” the agency said, giving no other details.

It scheduled a press conference for 11:00 a.m. EDT (1500 GMT).

The agency in May took the unusual step of revealing that it had been pursuing a nationwide investigation of crude oil markets since December 2007. CFTC usually does not confirm ongoing investigations until it announces results.

At the time, the agency said the probe was into “practices surrounding the purchase, transportation, storage, and trading of crude oil and related derivative contracts.”

The agency has been under pressure from the U.S. Congress to investigate allegations of manipulation of oil markets as U.S. crude oil futures hit a record high of $147.27 a barrel on July 11.

Oil prices have dropped more than $23 a barrel since then, the biggest fall in dollar terms since crude futures began trading in New York in 1983. (Reporting by Chris Baltimore; Editing by John Picinich)

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