Crude oil prices dropped to less than $103 per barrel Monday morning in New York as traders focus on gridlock in Washington.
The price of West Texas Intermediate sweet, light crude oil has settled down from more than $110 where it peaked in response to tensions related to a possible US military strike in Syria.
Oil was seeking a new pricing range when the partial government shutdown began.
With the shutdown now into a second business week, traders are reacting to Washington one comment at a time, industry analyst Dominick Chirichella said.
"For now the dysfunction in Washington D.C. continues with no end in sight. I expect the markets will continue to be driven in the short term by the 30 second news snippets hitting the media airwaves about the US government shutdown and debt ceiling," Chirichella wrote.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude oil priced in New York lost $1.05 to $102.79 per barrel. Reformulated blendstock gasoline prices lost 1.92 cents to $2.584 per gallon. Home heating oil shed 2.1 cents to $2.978 per gallon. Natural gas added 6 cents to reach $3.56 per million British thermal units.
At the pump, the national average price of unleaded gasoline fell to $3.346 per gallon from Sunday's $3.35, AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report said.