NEW YORK, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Oil prices rose on Monday following news that the U.S. is considering stepping up sanctions against Venezuela.
The U.S. government is considering imposing U.S. sanctions on Venezuela's vital oil sector after Venezuela held its National Constituent Assembly on Sunday, according to media reports.
Reports said the measures would likely be blocking sale of lighter U.S. crude that Venezuela mixes with its heavy crude and then exports.
The news gave rise to the speculation that oil prices will rise in the short term.
The West Texas Intermediate for September Delivery added 0.46 dollar to settle at 50.17 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for September delivery gained 0.13 dollar to close at 52.65 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.