Oil rises amid escalating tensions in the Middle East

Oil rises amid escalating tensions in the Middle East

Shafaq News / Oil prices rose slightly on Tuesday after sliding in the previous session, as markets weighed Middle East tensions against demand worries and rising OPEC supply.

Brent crude futures rose 18 cents, or 0.2%, to $76.30 a barrel at 0445 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures inched up 0.1%, or 6 cents, to $70.83 a barrel.

The benchmarks had fallen over 3% and 4% respectively on Monday on sharp price cuts by top exporter Saudi Arabia and a rise in OPEC output.

"Saudi Arabia's sharp price cuts and OPEC's increased production have offset supply concerns caused by escalating geopolitical tensions in the Middle East," said CMC Markets analyst Leon Li.

On the Gaza war, the Israeli military has said its fight against Hamas will rage through 2024, worrying markets that the conflict could grow into a regional crisis that could disrupt Middle Eastern oil supplies.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Tel Aviv late on Monday to brief Israeli officials on his two days of talks with Arab leaders on ending the war.

Holding back price gains however, a Reuters survey on Friday found that OPEC oil output rose in December as increases in Angola, Iraq and Nigeria offset continuing cuts by Saudi Arabia and other members of the wider OPEC+ alliance.

Higher supply had prompted Saudi Arabia to cut the February official selling price of its flagship Arab Light crude to Asia to the lowest level in 27 months.


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