WTI for August delivery, which expires tomorrow, slid as much as 40 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $102.73 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The more-active September future was 28 cents lower at $101.67. The U.S. benchmark crude oil was at a discount of $5.51 to Brent.
Brent oil is trending between gains and losses amid speculation that the downing of a Malaysian Air jet will have no impact on supplies from Russia, the world’s biggest energy exporter. West Texas Intermediate declined in New York.
Futures were little changed in London after falling 0.6 percent on July 18. President Vladimir Putin faces pressure to respond after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said there’s “extraordinary circumstantial evidence” that Russia provided the missile that Ukrainian rebels used to bring down Flight 17. Money managers cut bullish bets on WTI by the most since March 2013, Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.
Brent for September settlement was at $107.19 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange, down 5 cents, at 4:44 p.m. Sydney time. The contract dropped 65 cents to $107.24 on July 18. The volume of all futures traded was about 41 percent below the 100-day average. Prices are down 3.3 percent this year.