Oil is holding below $100 per barrel as investors wait for Congress to agree on a solution to the nation’s debt crisis.
Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for August delivery on Monday dropped 70 cents to $99.17 per barrel in morning trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In London, Brent crude fell 68 cents to $117.99 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.
Prices are wavering with eight days left before the Aug. 2 deadline to raise the government’s borrowing limit. Analysts say it’s unlikely that the U.S. would default, but investors could begin pricing in the possibility toward the end of the week.
A default would likely weaken the dollar, and that could push oil higher.
Retail gasoline prices slipped less than a penny to $3.694 per gallon.