Oil prices continued to drop Tuesday amid hawkish comments from top U.S. Federal Reserve officials.
With a light economic calendar, investors were closely watching comments from several Federal Reserve officials.
Dennis Lockhart, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, said Tuesday that the Fed's initial tapering of its bond buying programs could begin at any of the three remaining monetary- policy-making meetings this year.
On the previous day, Richard Fisher, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, also made hawkish remarks. He said the central bank was nearer to winding down its massive asset purchase programs following the July jobs data, adding that he wanted cuts to begin this fall.
Analysts forecast that U.S. crude inventories decreased 1.5 million barrels to 363.1 million in the week ending Aug. 2 to a six-month low.
On the economic front, the U.S. international trade deficit in goods and services decreased in June to the lowest level since August 2009, the Commerce Department said. The trade gap plunged 22.4 percent to 34.2 billion U.S. dollars in June, with exports rising to 191.2 billion dollars and imports dropping to 225.4 billion dollars.
Light, sweet crude for September delivery lost 1.26 dollars to settle at 105.3 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent for September delivery went down 52 cents, to close at 108.18 dollars a barrel.