June 26, 2012 - 13:15 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Oil hovered above $79 a barrel Tuesday, June 26 in Asia amid mixed global stock markets as investors looked to an EU summit to help fix Europe's debt and economic problems, AP reports.
Benchmark oil for August delivery was down 4 cents at $79.17 a barrel at late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 55 cents to settle at $79.21 in New York on Monday. It has fallen from $106 early last month as signs of a global economic slowdown mount.
In London, Brent crude for August delivery was up 25 cents at $91.26 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.
Oil traders often look to stock markets as a barometer of overall investor sentiment, and the Dow Jones industrial average fell 1.1 percent Monday. Most Asian stock markets dropped Tuesday while most European stock markets opened higher.
Markets have wobbled this week amid investor doubts that European leaders will be able to quickly resolve the region's debt and economic woes. A European Union summit later this week will address a stimulus proposal to help spur growth. Greece, meanwhile, is trying to water down the austerity measures that were a condition of its international bailout.
"The weakening financial markets look like a no confidence vote in the ability of the EU summit to successfully address Greek bailout concerns," energy trader and consultant Ritterbusch and Associates said in a report. "The unresolved euro debt crisis is the primary driver of lower oil prices."
In other energy trading, heating oil was up 0.6 cent at $2.54 per gallon while gasoline futures gained 1.4 cents at $2.51 per gallon. Natural gas fell 0.3 cent at $2.69 per 1,000 cubic feet.