Light, sweet crude for February delivery stood at US$93.26 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, midmorning in Singapore. As trading remained light due to holidays, oil prices were almost unchanged on Monday. Already, the previous session saw oil prices rise by more than US$2 a barrel on news of improved U.S. consumer spending, raising hopes that the American economy will weather the credit crisis credit and could also lead to stronger demand for oil and gasoline.
Japanese financial markets were closed Monday for the Emperor's birthday, a national holiday, while trading on some other Asian markets ended early for Christmas Eve. Markets in the U.S. and many other countries will be closed Tuesday (25 Dec) for Christmas. In London, February Brent crude settled at US$92.42 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.