SINGAPORE: Oil jumped as rising tension in the Middle East and North Africa halted output and exports from key OPEC producers Iraq and Libya.
Futures in New York and London rose more than 1.5% following weekly declines. Iraq temporarily stopped output at an oil field on Sunday and supply from a second site is at risk as widespread unrest escalates in OPEC’s second-biggest producer. In Libya, National Oil Corp. declared force majeure after Commander Khalifa Haftar blocked exports at ports under his control.
Oil has had a rocky start to the year as tension spiked between Washington and Tehran and initial optimism over the limited US-China trade deal waned amid scepticism about China’s ability to meet targets. The International Energy Agency said last week that supplies from Iraq are “potentially vulnerable” due to rising political risks in the country and the broader region.