SINGAPORE – Oil prices eased in Asia on Monday as investors took profits after a run-up in prices last week before the long Easter break, analysts said.
New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) light sweet crude for delivery in May, shed 39 cents to $96.84 a barrel and Brent North Sea crude for May dropped 22 cents to $109.80 in mid-morning trade.
“It is not surprising investors are taking a breather,” said Kelly Teoh, market strategist at IG Markets Singapore.
“WTI has been trading near the highest in the past six weeks as it tracks US economic growth, and is due for some profit taking,” she told AFP.
Prices had pushed up for the fifth straight session on Thursday before markets closed Friday for the Easter weekend, helped by firm economic data from Germany and the United States, and the calm reopening of the banks in Cyprus following a nearly two-week lockdown.