Oil Hits 9-Month High As Syria Tensions Escalate


Oil Hits 9-Month High As Syria Tensions Escalate
“Oil prices moved right at the open (at 9 am ET), accompanied by a big jump in volume,” said Addison Armstrong, senior director of market research at Tradition Energy. “The US proposing to arm Syrian rebels, train them inside Jordan, and implement a no-fly zone in Syrian airspace is a big increase in tension in the Middle East.” Although Syria is not a major oil producer, traders are worried about the reaction in Russia and Iran and the potential for conflict to spread in the Middle East region. “One way or another, the Syrian conflict is escalating. It is not only morphing into a US-Russia proxy war but also into a US-Iran proxy war and nobody knows how this will terminate,” says energy analyst Olivier Jakob of Petromatrix. While geopolitics has returned as a key factor driving oil prices, supply issues are also front and center. A deadly accident at a North Sea gas platform may also be supporting Brent crude prices, says Again Capital’s John Kilduff. Traders may worry about oil production as well from the region that provides supplies for Brent crude, the global oil benchmark.
—By CNBC’s Sharon Epperson.