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Multiple tanker attacks in Gulf today send oil surging, fears grow of a US-Iran confrontation

Jun 13, 2019

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  • Oil bounced back from its recent weakness after two tankers were attacked at the entrance of the Persian Gulf
  • Crude oil rallied as much as 4.5% this morning on the news
  • These attacks come just weeks after 4 tankers were attacked in what the US called Iranian-backed attacks
  • The first ship is Japanese-owned, and its owner said it was hit with a “shell”
  • The Japanese ship was hit at a time when Japan’s Prime Minister is in Iran trying to help ease US-Iran tensions
  • The second ship belongs to Norway’s Frontline (FRO) which said its ship was rocked by three separate explosions

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  • Experts believe both ships likely suffered attacks caused by naval mines in the water
  • The US Navy Fifth Fleet responded to distress calls from both vessels and rendered assistance
  • Today’s attacks came a day after Iran-backed rebels in Yemen fired a missile at a Saudi airport in the south of the country, injuring 26
  • The recent ramp-up of US sanctions on Iran, not allowing any oil exports which is choking its economy, has increased tensions noticeably in the Gulf
  • While increased tensions in the Gulf usually lead to higher oil prices, oil recently touched bear market territory on a mix of surging supply from US shale and a weakening economic growth outlook
  • The US accused Iran of being behind the attacks in an afternoon news conference 
     

 

 

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