Oil price

Oil prices managed to stay above $111 today thanks to positive expectations on US lawmakers to fix the budget crisis, supported by the continued supply worries from the Middle East.

Brent crude slipped 11 cents to $111.59 a barrel by 0501 GMT, 61 cents away from the previous session’s one-month top of $112.20. US crude fell 21 cents to $89.07, reports Reuters.

Investors are expecting that the US lawmakers will reach a deal that would save the country from the looming fiscal cliff – $600bn in tax increases and spending cuts scheduled to start in January 2013.

The prices also got a push by the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with Israel already lining up heavy armoured bulldozers with blades on its border with Gaza.

Investors still expect a ceasefire between the two parties, with the mediator Egypt indicating a possible of a deal which could put an end to the fighting.

Prices were also influenced by the eurozone finance minister’s indication that it is considering a disbursement of €44bn euros in emergency loans to Greece, but the gains were restricted by the fall of euro, after rating agency Moody’s withdrew triple-A rating for France.

Image: An Israeli soldier stands guard during an operational activity in Palestine’s Nablus. Photo courtesy of Israel Defense Forces.