Energy crisis: Oil prices FALL as Putin's threats BACKFIRE spectacularly

Oil prices fell today after soaring to record levels for months, as expectations grow US crude inventories may have risen last week. Future contracts of Brent crude for the September settlement fell 68 cents or 0.6 percent to $105.59 a barrel (£87.8) by 0949 GMT. The contract rose 5.1 percent on Monday, which was the largest percentage gain recorded since April 12.

The fall in oil prices is an embarrassing failure for Putin after Russia aggravated the global fossil fuel energy crisis by weaponising his control over Europe’s energy supplies.

By threatening to cut off natural gas flows, European countries have scrambled to deals with other providers, which in turn pushed oil and gas prices around the world to record levels for months.

WTI crude futures for August delivery fell by 32 cents, or 0.3 percent, to $102.28 (£85.04) a barrel.

The contract climbed 5.1 percent on Monday and enjoyed the largest percentage gain since May 11.

Experts forecast that oil inventories in the United States, the world’s biggest oil consumer, may have risen last week while gasoline stockpiles likely fell.

Stephen Brennock from brokerage PVM said: “Prices climbed aggressively as the tight state of affairs on the supply front shifted back into the spotlight”.

Last week, US President Joe Biden visited major oil exporter Saudi Arabia in the hopes of striking a deal to ramp up oil production in a bid to tame fuel prices.

However, officials from Saudi Arabia, which is the de facto leader of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), did not offer Mr Biden any clear assurances an output increase was secured.

READ MORE: Putin outsmarted by new gas deal to double EU exports amidst threats

On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister noted that he saw no shortage of oil in the market, but rather a lack of oil refining capacity.

He said that this shortage made it necessary to invest more in developing capacity to process crude oil into various oil products.

Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud told reporters in Tokyo: “As of today, we don’t see a lack of oil in the market.

“There is a lack of refining capacity, which is also an issue, so we need to invest more in refining capacity,”.