July 4th conjures up a bunch of quintessential American symbols: barbecues, baseball, oil and gas prices.

So, as motorists prepare to hit the roads this coming weekend, oil touched $70 earlier today, but has hovered around $69 for most of Monday morning.

Light, sweet crude for August delivery is currently gaining 79 cents, landing at $69.95 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange during electronic trading. On Friday, the contract price slumped to $69.16, losing $1.07 at settlement.

The moves come ahead of some economic reports due this week. On Wednesday, the Energy Information Administration will release its weekly crude inventory statistics. But many more will be keyed on the Labor Department's June unemployment stats, set to come out on Thursday.

Energy stocks were mixed on Friday.

Exxon Mobil

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saw its shares slip 1.2% by the closing bell.

Occidental Petroleum

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Devon Energy

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, and

Whiting Petroleum

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followed the bellwether into negative territory, finishing the day down 1.8%, 2.5% and 2% respectively.

Denbury Resources

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, a Texas-based concern with operations throughout the Gulf Coast, saw its shares rise 1.8%, or 26 cents, to come to $15.04 by the closing bell.

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