NEW YORK (AP) — The price of oil plunged again Monday, falling below $50 a barrel for the first time since April 2009 as evidence mounted that the world will be oversupplied with oil this year. Benchmark U.S. oil dipped to $49.77 before closing down $2.65, or 5 percent, to $50.04 a barrel. Brent crude, a global benchmark used to price oil used by many U.S. refineries, sank $3.31, or 5.9 percent, to $53.11. In June of last year, oil traded above $107 a barrel. But rising production outside of OPEC, especially in the U.S., boosted supplies just as weakness in the global economy slowed the growth in oil demand. OPEC’s decision in November to maintain existing production levels accelerated the rout in oil prices. Slower growth in China’s economy, a driver of oil demand in recent years, and a strong dollar, which makes oil more expensive for holders of foreign currencies, have also pressured oil prices.On Monday Citigroup cut its forecast for 2015 global oil prices as a result of high supplies. Citigroup analyst Ed Morse wrote in the report that the first half of this year will bring “a step-up in oversupply, more volatility and turmoil.” Morse reduced his forecast for global crude to an average of $63 a barrel for 2015, down from $80 a barrel.
The Anchorage Police Department Building (Photo by Wesley Early, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage)The Anchorage Police Department is joining 100 other police departments around the country to provide more data and information to their respective communities.Listen Now APD announced Friday it’s participating in the White House Police Data Initiative.Lieutenant Jack Carson says the aim is to increase transparency within the Anchorage Police Department.“We’re gonna put out the data sets that are gonna hopefully give further light on what we do as a police department day-to-day, and creating that transparency is gonna help us work better with our community is what we’re hoping for,” Carson said.Over the next year, APD will provide three open data sets to the public.But, Carson says exactly which data sets those will be has not yet been determined.“We’ve been going to the community safety meetings and community councils and stuff, and getting a feel for what the community is starving for, what information they’re wanting from the Anchorage Police Department,” Carson said. “And we’re gonna base the data sets we release on the information we receive from those local councils.”Carson says the new data will be in addition to information the department already releases, like calls for service, arrest rates and citizen complaints.There’s no firm timeline for when the department will release each set, but Carson expects the distribution to be adequately spread out over the next year.