Brent Steady at $111, All Eyes Still On Syria
Brent crude oil dipped lower on Thursday as the UN moved forward on a diplomatic solution to the crisis in Syria. The commodity traded at $111.61 at 7:30 GMT on Thursday morning.
With the US working together with international leaders to fine tune a non-violent resolution to the situation in Syria, military action in the fragile Middle East is looking very unlikely. Brent prices slid more than four percent since Monday after reports that the UN was considering a Russian proposal which would allow Syria to turn over its chemical weapons in order to avoid military intervention.
Although the details of the proposal haven't been finalized, President Obama agreed to explore the idea and put off the use of military force.
With concern about military action fading, Brent prices are likely to face significant pressure from the approaching Federal Reserve meeting, at which the US central bank is expected to announce the beginning of its tapering plan.
With the exception of disappointing jobs data on Friday, economic indicators from the nation have been positive, leading many to believe that the US economy is fit to stand on its own without the bank's $85 billion per month bond buying plan.
Brent was also under pressure from reports from the US Energy Information Administration which showed that US crude stocks fell less than expected. Reuters reported that the EIA released data on Wednesday showing that the number one oil consuming nation's crude stocks fell by just 219,000 barrels last week, a far cry from expectations of 1.5 million barrels.
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