Tokyo - Oil prices were mixed in Asian trade on Monday as investors await further developments on a possible US-led military strike against Syria.
New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in October, was down 22 cents at $110.31 in mid-morning trade, while Brent North Sea crude for October climbed one cent to $116.13.
WTI hit a 28-month high in New York trade on Friday owing to tensions between the US and Russia over a potential military strike against the Assad regime for its alleged use of chemical weapons against its own people.
Over the weekend, Washington deepened its diplomatic offensive at home and abroad as President Barack Obama braced for a key week in his push to persuade sceptical Americans to back strikes.
US lawmakers returning on Monday from their summer break will begin a debate on whether to approve a limited military action, with a Senate vote possibly coming as early as Wednesday.
“Geopolitical developments in Syria will be closely followed,” Singapore's United Overseas Bank said in a note.
The “key political event” investors will be watching is Obama's “bid to win congressional authorisation for a military strike on Syria”, it said.
Other analysts said the market will also be watching more economic data from the US and China this week after Beijing said Sunday that exports rose 7.2 percent year-on-year in August.
“News of improved export demand from China was a positive for markets and helped to maintain the higher levels from Friday,” said Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC markets in Sydney. - AFP