Oil Prices Drop on Europe's Worries


"Last week's run up to $88 per barrel has hit a wall of doubt."

Concern over debt issues in Europe weighed on crude oil Tuesday, pulling prices on the New York Mercantile Exchange under $84 per barrel.

Last week's run up to $88 per barrel has hit a wall of doubt in Europe, where finance ministers are discussing a bailout of Ireland and are worried the debt crisis will spread to Portugal and Spain.

Ireland continues to deny it requires a bailout, saying it will manage to correct its financial difficulties with austerity measures alone. European Union officials are expected to review Ireland's four-year budget plans this week.

The price of December delivery crude oil in New York lost $1.61 overnight to $83.27 per barrel. Heating oil prices shed $0.03 cents to $2.328 per gallon. Reformulated gasoline blendstock prices lost $0.05 cents to $2.1584 per gallon.

Henry Hub natural gas prices added $0.09 to $3.898 per million British thermal units.

At the retail level, the national average price of unleaded gasoline rose slightly to $2.893 per gallon Tuesday from Monday's $2.892, AAA said.

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