US oil ends under $108 amid Syria 'will they or won't they'
Crude seesawed in choppy trading on Friday, with U.S. oil settling sharply lower amid relentless speculation about whether the United States would stage or lead a military intervention in war torn Syria.
Oil sank in early trading as doubts grew about the U.S.'s commitment to a confrontation with Damascus. Prices briefly pared losses after Secretary of State John Kerry laid out a case against the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad -- fanning new speculation that the U.S. could indeed launch a strike against the country, even as Britain's parliament defeated a proposal that could have led to UK involvement in an attack on Syria.
With most of the Middle East already embroiled in conflict, analysts are speculating that a new conflict could strain supplies, triggering an even sharper run-up in the price of crude. Investors are worried that a battle with Syria could spill over into other parts of the strife-riven region, particularly as oil supplies from Libya, Nigeria and Iraq have fallen.
Yet after President Barack Obama stated no final decision had been made about a strike, crude revisited the low end of the session's trading range. Brent crude shed more than $1 to trade under $114 a barrel. U.S. crude for October delivery fell by $1.15 to end the session at $107.65, after falling to the day's troughs at $106.75.
Oil prices are still on track for their biggest monthly gain in a year, with Brent up more than 6 percent in August.
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--Reuters contributed to this article