Crude oil futures settled lower on Monday as investors moved positions ahead of the European Union summit to tackle the Eurozone debt crisis.
Crude for August delivery fell 55 cents to settle at $79.21 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Oil prices fell more than 5% last week on fears that a slowing global economy and rising US stockpiles will weigh on future demand for crude.
On the ICE futures exchange Brent crude for August delivery added three cents to end at $91.01 a barrel.
As well as the upcoming European summit, markets also digested Spain’s formal request for a bank bailout from the European Union on Monday.
Crude was also weighed down by the stronger dollar and a weak performance among US equities. Oil futures have dropped three out of the last four sessions and have fallen over 8% this month so far.
Monday’s decline was kept slim however on nerves about the path of Tropical Storm Debby in the Gulf of Mexico.
Among precious metals, gold climbed on Monday as bargain hunters moved in following last week’s steep losses and as investors switched position ahead of gold options expiry on Tuesday.
Gold for August delivery added $21.50 at $1,588.40 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.