Oil starts week at lowest level in 2012

By CHRIS KAHN,AP Energy Writer Updated at 2012-05-14 17:23:58 +0000


NEW YORK (AP) — The price of oil has declined to its low for the year on continued doubts about Europe's ability to pay off massive government debts.

Benchmark U.S. crude lost $1.57 to $94.56 per barrel in New York. It dipped to $93.65 per barrel earlier in the day, the lowest since mid-December.

Oil declined as a leadership crisis in Greece raised doubts that it would comply with a eurozone-supported plan to get out of debt. Analysts see Greece as a test case for whether cash-strapped European nations can slash spending and improve their economies. Europe consumes 18 percent of the world's oil.

In the U.S., retail gasoline prices fell less than a penny over the weekend to $3.727 per gallon.