Crude oil prices fell in Asia early Tuesday in thin trade after U.S. markets were shot overnight for a public holiday and with supply data on U.S. stocks to be delayed by a day as a result.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude oil for delivery in October traded at $95.76 a barrel, down 0.21%, after settling Monday in electronic trade at $95.71 a barrel, down 0.26%.
Brent oil fell 0.62% to $103.13 a barrel on the ICE Europe exchange on Monday.
Overnight, the Russian ruble hit a fresh record low against the dollar as U.S. officials are working closely with the European Union to keep their Russia sanctions programs aligned in timing and severity.
Existing sanctions have so far not disrupted oil exports from Russia, the world’s second-largest oil exporter.
On Saturday, European Union leaders agreed to draw up options within a week for possible new sanctions against Russia, with action to follow quickly unless Moscow takes clear steps to scale back its intervention in Ukraine. Reports have emerged that hundreds of Russian soldiers have entered Ukraine.
European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said the bloc wouldn't set out specific criteria for triggering fresh sanctions but said there was "determination" to ensure Russia paid an appropriate price for heightening tensions.
In the week ahead, trading volumes are likely to remain light on Monday, with U.S. markets closed for the Labor Day holiday. Investors will be focusing on Thursday’s outcome of the ECB’s monthly monetary policy meeting, as well as Friday’s closely watched U.S. non-farm payrolls report.
Monetary policy announcements by central banks in Australia, Japan, Canada and the U.K. will also be awaited.