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As Syria strike momentum stalls, oil prices pull back slightly

August 29, 2013|By Ricardo Lopez
  • The price of crude oil retreated Thursday, easing fears that gas prices will rise this fall.
The price of crude oil retreated Thursday, easing fears that gas prices… (Seth Perlman / Associated…)

Crude oil prices began pulling back Thursday as momentum for a U.S. military strike on Syria stalled.

The price of light, sweet crude for October deliver fell 80 cents to $109.30 a barrel Thursday from a previous settlement price of $110.10 Wednesday. 

Brent crude oil fell 67 cents Thursday, retreating to $115.94. 

Crude oil prices had risen this week after the U.S. and others accused the Syrian government of launching a chemical attack against rebel fighters and civilians, which killed hundreds. 

The threat of a U.S. military strike on Syria raised energy traders' fears that the Middle East oil supply chain could be disrupted. But those concerns appeared to ease as the Obama administration was dealt setbacks in its effort to pursue action against Syria.

The U.S. has been unable to get support from the U.N. Security Council. Furthermore, British support for a strike was unexpectedly called into question as Parliament said it wanted to wait for a report from U.N. chemical experts who are in Syria investigating the apparent chemical attack.

When crude oil prices rose this week, analysts warned that gas prices could rise as a result. But a drop in demand for gas now that the summer driving season is ending and the stalling momentum for U.S. strike momentum appears to, for the moment, have alleviated some of those fears.

But experts also said that if the conflict escalates, all bets are off. 

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ricardo.lopez@latimes.com

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