Oil Rises on Ukraine Turmoil

Brent crude surged to a two-month high amid escalating tension between Ukraine and Russia, the world’s largest oil producer. West Texas Intermediate rose to the most since September.

The European benchmark climbed as much as 3 percent, boosting its premium to WTI. Ukraine mobilized its army reserves as Russia seized control of the Black Sea region of Crimea. The U.S. is weighing sanctions against Moscow during the worst standoff between the West and Russia since the Cold War ended. WTI gained on speculation supplies at Cushing, Oklahoma, slid.

“The Russian foray into the Crimea is jacking up the geopolitical premium in the market,” said Gene McGillian, an analyst and broker at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut. “The bulls are having their way and the rally continues.”

Brent for April settlement climbed $2.73, or 2.5 percent, to $111.80 a barrel at 11 a.m. New York time on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. It rose to $112.39 earlier, the highest level since Dec. 30. Volume was double the 100-day average.

via Bloomberg

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza