U.S. crude for August delivery rose to $104.56 by the mid-afternoon on Monday.

Brent crude for September delivery was down 3 cents to $176.21 on the ICE exchange.

Last Wednesday, Washington announced new sanctions on Russia over Moscow’s support of separatist forces in Ukraine. Rosneft, the largest Russian oil producer, and Novatek, the largest gas producer, were included in the sanctions. The sanctions bar Rosneft and Novatek from obtaining new debt with more than 90 days maturity from US lenders.

In a note to clients, analysts from Commerzbank in Frankfurt said that “the majority of market participants still do not expect the West to impose the kind of tougher sanctions that would also affect Russian energy shipments.”

However, the AP noted that the intensifying conflict in Gaza and clashes between rival factions in Libya could increase risk and impact crude prices going forward.


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