Oil Prices Slip On US ‘Cliff,’ Greece Concerns

From AFP

Crude oil prices edged lower Monday as traders remained cautious ahead of a looming US “fiscal cliff” and as Greece awaits an EU decision on release of a loan installment to avoid default.

West Texas Intermediate for December shed 50 cents from Friday’s closing level to end the session at $85.57 a barrel.

In London trade, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in December fell 33 cents to $109.07 a barrel.

“The crude complex remains at the mercy of developments and non-developments” in two areas that are currently dictating focus, “the impending ‘fiscal cliff’ and the euro debt crisis,” said Matt Smith at Summit Energy.

The US Congress remained divided after last week’s elections, with Democrats holding the Senate and Republicans the House of Representatives, underlining challenges in reaching compromise to avoid the year-end “fiscal cliff” of spending cuts and tax hikes expected to tip the economy back into recession.

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