Brent crude slips below $115
Brent crude slipped below $115 today as supply worries eased on a possible release of oil reserves by the United States while Israeli comments on Iran reduced fears of a potential conflict in the Middle East that could disrupt exports.
News that the White House is "dusting off old plans" for a potential reserve release helped benchmark contracts come off the previous session's three-month highs.
The European benchmark has risen more than a third in less than two months from the year's low at $88.49, as worries grow about a conflict over Iran's disputed nuclear programme.
That increase may have been excessive, and the current fall may be a correction to bring prices to an equilibrium.
Brent crude fell $1.13 to $114.14 a barrel by 05.36 GMT, after sliding to as low as $113.90.
The September contract which expired yesterday ended at the highest since May 2. US oil slipped 50 cents to $95.10, after settling up $1.27.
"The news of the release in stocks is partly making prices come off. I think around $100 a barrel is reasonable for both producers and consumers," said Caren Seren Varol, a risk manager at Global Risk Management.
"Prices also got a bit ahead of themselves, so the pull back we are seeing now is a correction to the fast rise."
US officials will monitor market conditions over the coming weeks, watching whether gasoline prices fall after the September 3 Labour Day holiday, in line with usual practice, a source with knowledge of the situation said.