- Heightened tensions in the Middle East boost crude oil prices.
- Saudis accuse Iran of ordering the drone attack.
Although crude oil prices struggled to push higher yesterday after the weekly EIA report showed a higher-than-expected buildup in crude oil inventories, heightened tensions in the Middle East provided a boost today, lifting the barrel of West Texas Intermediate to a fresh 2-week high at $63.46. As of writing, the WTI was up 2% on the day at $63.30.
Earlier today, Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthi militia claimed responsibility for drone attacks on Saudi oil pumping stations and Saudi Arabia accused Iran of ordering these attacks, reviving concerns over supply disruptions in the region.
“The attack by the Iranian-backed Houthi militias against the two Aramco pumping stations proves that these militias are merely a tool that Iran’s regime uses to implement its expansionist agenda in the region,” Prince Khalid bin Salman, a son of King Salman, tweeted out. “The terrorist acts, ordered by the regime in Tehran, and carried out by the Houthis, are tightening the noose around the ongoing political efforts.”
Earlier this week, the EIA reported that crude oil inventories in the U.S. increased by 5.4 million barrels in the week ending May 10. Friday’s Baker Hughes rig-count report will be the next data to watch.
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