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Oil traded near the highest in three years as optimism on the global economy, cold weather and political unrest bolstered a market that's finally shaking off a prolonged surplus.Oil has risen for two years running as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia led a coalition of oil producers in cutting output. Prices have also been boosted by stoppages at pipelines in the U.K. and Libya. However, they are now at levels that are expected to help U.S. shale producers ramp up drilling, unlocking more crude and undermining OPEC's efforts.West Texas Intermediate for February delivery was at $61.67 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, up 4 cents, at 8:56 a.m. Total volume traded was about 1 percent above the 100-day average.
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