Oil prices are dropping, continuing the downtrend from last week

A view of Phillips’ 66 Los Angeles Refinery (front), which processes domestic and imported crude oil into gasoline, aviation, and diesel fuels and storage tanks for refined petroleum products at Kinder Morgan Carson Terminal (background), at sunset in Carson, California, United States, 11 March 2022. The photo was taken on March 11, 2022. The photo was taken with a drone. Photograph: Beng Guan/Reuters

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  • Russia shows signs of interest in Ukraine talks – US official
  • The Kremlin says the next talks between Russia and Ukraine will be held on Monday
  • Russia relies on sanctions with the help of China

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Oil prices fell on Sunday at the start of the session, extending their decline last week, as a U.S. official said Russia was showing signs that it might be ready for substantive negotiations on Ukraine.

Brent crude futures were down $1.82, or 1.6%, at $110.85 a barrel by 6:47 PM ET (2247 GMT). West Texas Intermediate crude futures fell $2.41, or 2.2 percent, to $106.92 a barrel.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February, which Moscow calls a “special operation,” has disrupted energy markets globally. Brent crude fell last week by 4.8% after hitting $139.13 on March 7. US crude recorded a weekly decline of 5.7% after touching the highest level at $130.50 on March 7.

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Investors were concerned about a tighter oil market in the wake of the Russian action. Prices fell last week as traders assessed potential improvements in the supply outlook, which has been disrupted by the Ukraine crisis. Read more

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US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said Sunday that Russia is showing signs that it may be ready for substantive negotiations on Ukraine, even as Moscow intends to “destroy” its neighbor.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was quoted by the RIA news agency as saying on Sunday that the Russian-Ukrainian talks are not taking place at the moment, but will continue on Monday.

Peskov made the comments after Ukraine’s presidential adviser, Oleksiy Aristovich, said Ukraine and Russia were actively holding talks on Sunday.

Russia said on Sunday it was counting on China to help it withstand the economic hit from Western sanctions over the war in Ukraine, but the United States warned Beijing not to provide that lifeline. Read more

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, who is due to meet China’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi in Rome on Monday, warned Beijing that it would “absolutely” face consequences if it helped Moscow evade sweeping sanctions over the war in Ukraine. Read more

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(Reporting by Stephanie Kelly) Editing by Richard Chang

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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