Crude Oil Prices Rise Amid International Tensions

Crude-oil futures started the week slightly higher in Asia, coming as Friday’s price jump following the U.S. airstrike in Syria. The U.S. benchmark has risen in its eight of the past nine sessions through Friday.

Prices rose some 2% last week, with only a small portion of the gains the result of the U.S. missile launch against Syria. While Syria is a marginal oil producer, the U.S. move has stoked concerns of possible retaliation from Iran and Russia – both of which have renewed their support to stand by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

Military action in the Middle East, which accounts for around 40% of global oil production, always carries the risk of pushing up oil prices. But Syria, following years of bitter civil war, produces virtually no oil— down from around 400,000 barrels a day in 2010, according to Thomas Pugh, commodities economist at Capital Economics.

Russia and Iran are major oil producers, responsible for around 11 million barrels a day and 4 million barrels a day, respectively.

Meanwhile, on Friday the rise in Oil prices made a huge impact on Pakistan Stock market as it played a huge role in ending a four-day losing streak with the benchmark KSE-100 index gaining 532.77 points in the closing day of the week.