Oil prices inch up from near 5-mth lows as Middle East risks persist.
Oil prices rose in Asian trade on Tuesday as focus remained on a potential escalation in the Israel-Hamas conflict, although disappointing OPEC+ cuts and strength in the dollar kept crude trading near five-month lows.
Fears of a potential escalation in the Israel-Hamas conflict came back into play after the U.S. held Iran responsible for an attack on U.S. vessels in the Red Sea by Houthi forces. But traders remained wary of pricing a risk premium into oil over the conflict, given that it so far had minimal impact on Middle Eastern oil supplies.
Disappointing production cuts from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies (OPEC+) were the key point of contention for oil markets, after the cartel announced new production cuts of less than 1 million barrels per day for early-2024.