The price of oil is plunging ahead of President Trump’s announcement on the Iran nuclear deal.
US crude was down as much as 4.4%.
Traders attributed the decline to nervousness that Trump could surprise the market with a less aggressive decision than anticipated. Lighter or delayed sanctions on Iran would allow it to keep shipping oil overseas, holding the price down.
Trump is expected to announce that he will allow sanctions to go forward on Iran, a first step toward withdrawing from the nuclear deal, according to a US official and a person familiar with the plan.
But the sanctions could take months to go into effect as the US government develops guidance for companies and banks.
Officials cautioned that nothing is final until Trump makes his announcement from the Diplomatic Room of the White House at 2 p.m. ET, and held out the possibility that he could change course.
— CNN’s Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.