Oil Prices Drop despite Production Problems
World oil prices dropped on Monday as eurozone debt concerns offset production stoppages in the Gulf of Mexico and Norway.
New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in August, fell 60 cents to $79.16 a barrel.
Brent North Sea crude for August dropped $1.07 to $89.91 in London midday deals.
Prices had risen slightly in Asian trading hours as the onset of Tropical Storm Debby forced oil and gas operators in the Gulf of Mexico to evacuate some platforms and rigs.
"The oil market started the week on the negative territory... tracking losses in the global equity markets," said Sucden Financial Research analyst Myrto Sokou.
"The market sentiment has been hurt amid renewed concerns about the uncertain economic conditions in the eurozone ahead of the crucial European Union summit meeting on Thursday and Friday."
Traders were also tracking events in Mexico.
"Over the weekend we see that the Gulf of Mexico has been affected by the storm and production has been disrupted," Ker Chung Yang, commodity analyst for Phillip Futures in Singapore, told AFP.
"They shut the rigs in the Gulf of Mexico, so I think this is one of the key reasons that is supporting the oil prices at the moment."
Oil production in the Gulf of Mexico constitutes 20 percent of US output, and any disruption in the area would have ramifications on crude prices as the US is the world's largest oil consumer.
Meanwhile strike action on Sunday by hundreds of energy-sector workers in Norway impacted crude output in Europe's main oil producer.
By AFP, 25/06/2012