Oil prices fell on Monday based on investor optimism of a resolution to the Ukraine crisis should a meeting take place between US and Russian participants and the likelihood of Iranian oil returning to the market as the nuclear deal nears completion.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $91.09 per barrel at 0649 GMT with a 0.32% loss after closing the previous session at $91.39 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) traded at $89.85 per barrel at the same time for a 0.39% decrease after ending the previous session at $90.21 a barrel.
Oil prices saw price slumps at the start of the week in hopes of an outcome from potential talks on the Ukraine crisis between US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.
Biden has accepted a meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin 'in principle,' if Russia does not invade Ukraine.
The White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a statement Sunday that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov are 'scheduled to meet later this week in Europe, provided Russia does not proceed with military action.”
The top diplomats are expected to meet on Thursday, Feb. 24.
Psaki said the US is ready for diplomacy but is also ready to respond with swift and severe consequences if Moscow chooses war against the former Soviet republic.
Expectations that the Iran nuclear deal negotiations in the Austrian capital Vienna will conclude soon, releasing sanctions on Iran and opening the way for up to 900,000 barrels per day of Iranian crude on the global market also shot prices down.
A senior EU official, speaking under the condition of anonymity, said the talks are 'really very much in the latest stage' and 'most of the issues are agreed.'
However, the source warned that 'nothing is agreed until everything is agreed,' and said it was impossible to say whether the partners would strike a final agreement in the next few days.
By Sibel Morrow