Saudi Arabia is a target for both sides in Iraq’s deepening conflict, one reason it has ramped up security levels to confront a threat that’s more immediate than the Arab Spring revolts three years ago.
Gas soared on Friday on a string of refining issues. Gasoline went crazy as wholesalers were stunned by strong demand. Despite near record production, supplies are tightening and refining issues are making things jumpy.
Oil had a hard time deciding whether or not it wanted to continue its upward trajectory. While Egypt continues to simmer and we saw more violence, the truth is that the fears of an immediate risk to supply seems to be waning.
The ramifications of Fed Chairman Bernanke’s speech last week are still resonating in the marketplace. Far too much attention, in our opinion, was paid to subject matters that are of no significance to global economics.
Oil is trying to rally despite the fact that Chinese manufacturing is showing a significant contraction. Perhaps the reason is that it increases the likelihood that the Chinese government, which has been putting the squeeze on the banks, will lighten up.