Iran attack: Crude oil prices jump after Iraq missile attacks

Oil prices have jumped after at least two airbases hosting US troops in Iraq were hit by ballistic missiles.

Brent crude was up by 2.5% at $69.94 per barrel in mid-morning Asian trade on concerns that this could disrupt oil supplies from the Middle East.

So-called safe haven assets, like gold and the Japanese yen, also rose sharply on the news.

At the same time global stock prices were sent lower on concerns over the growing conflict in the Middle East.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 stock index fell by 2%, and Hang Seng in Hong Kong was down 1% in early trade.

Iranian state television said the attack was a retaliation for the killing of the country's top commander Qasem Soleimani.

The attack happened just hours after the funeral service for Soleimani, who was killed by a US drone strike on Friday.

His death had raised concerns that the conflict between the US and Iran could escalate further.

That could disrupt shipping in the world's busiest sea route for oil, the Strait of Hormuz. Around a fifth of global oil supply passes through the strait which connects the Gulf with the Arabian Sea.

The Strait of Hormuz is vital for the main oil exporters in the Gulf region – Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the UAE, and Kuwait – whose economies are built around oil and gas production. Iran also relies heavily on this route for its oil exports.

Qatar, the world's biggest producer of liquefied natural gas (LNG), exports nearly all its gas through the strait.

After the latest attacks, the US aviation regulator banned American airlines from flying over Iraq, Iran and neighbourRead More – Source