YEREVAN, September 10. /ARKA/. Oil prices closed lower on Monday, retreating from their highest close in more than two years as investors’ worries over a potential U.S. attack against Syria appeared to ease.
Crude oil for October delivery CLV3 -0.74% fell $1.01, or 0.9%, to end at $109.52 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after ending Friday at its highest settlement price in 28 months.
October Brent crude UK:LCOV3 -0.36% , the European oil benchmark, dropped $2.40 to $113.72 a barrel on ICE Futures.
“It seems that the potential attack on Syria gets pushed out further and further,” said Phil Flynn, senior market analyst at Price Futures Group. He added: “The sense is that we are taking a lot of the risk premium out that we put into it.”
The drop in oil prices came ahead of a major public push by President Barack Obama to gain support for a retaliatory strike against Syrian government targets amid evidence that the regime used chemical weapons against civilians.
Obama has scheduled interviews with all major U.S. television networks for broadcast later Monday, with the president due to follow up with a televised speech Tuesday at 9 p.m. Eastern time.
Russia, which has supported Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during the country’s civil war, called for Syria to turn over chemical weapons to international control on Monday, which Syria reportedly welcomed. The U.S. said it would take a “hard look” at the offer.
Citi Futures wrote late Friday that Obama appeared to face a difficult task in convincing Congress to approve military action against Syria.
“There’s no doubt that this political landscape will shift [...] as Congress returns to Washington and debate intensifies, but it’s going to take some real persuasion to get to even a minimal majority. And we see some risk of a British-style parliamentary revolt,” they wrote, referring to the U.K. Parliament’s rejection of joining in an attack on Syria. –0--