Oil prices fall amid Gaza ceasefire prospects, fears of tropical storm Beryl

(MENAFN) Oil prices experienced a dip in early trading on Monday following a four-week streak of gains. This decline was attributed to the potential for a ceasefire in Gaza, which has eased geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Additionally, investors were closely monitoring the possible disruptions to U.S. energy supplies posed by Tropical Storm Beryl. Specifically, brent crude futures decreased by 12 cents, or 0.1 percent, settling at USD86.42 a barrel by 0234 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude fell by 28 cents, or 0.3 percent, to USD82.88 a barrel.

Current negotiations are focused on a U.S. ceasefire plan aimed at concluding the nine-month conflict in Gaza, with Qatar and Egypt acting as mediators. According to Tony Sycamore, an analyst based in Sydney at IG, any concrete outcomes from these ceasefire discussions could temporarily reduce geopolitical risks in the oil market.

Meanwhile, several key ports in Texas, including Corpus Christi, Houston, Galveston, Freeport, and Texas City, were closed on Sunday in anticipation of Tropical Storm Beryl. This storm is expected to escalate to a Category 2 hurricane upon making landfall on the central Texas coast, between Galveston and Corpus Christi, later on Monday. These port closures could lead to a temporary halt in crude oil and liquefied natural gas exports, oil shipments to refineries, and the distribution of motor fuel from those facilities.

Last week, oil prices had gained support from the anticipation of potential interest rate cuts, following U.S. data released on Friday that indicated declining inflation and slowing job growth. Sycamore noted that lower interest rates could stimulate economic activity and subsequently increase demand for crude oil.

In addition to these developments, investors were also paying close attention to the possible implications of recent elections in Britain, France, and Iran on geopolitics and energy policies. 



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