Oil price hits one-month high after US launches missile strike on Syria

Syria has limited oil production, but its location in the Middle East sparked broader worries that the conflict might spread and disrupt oil shipments elsewhere

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The price of oil briefly rallied more than 2 per cent to its highest level in around a month on Friday after the US launched a missile strike on Syria, triggering a fall in stocks and the dollar.

Donald Trump  ordered the firing of 59 cruise missiles at a military target in the country – a swift retaliatory blow for the President Bashar al-Assad’s alleged use of chemical weapons on civilians earlier in the week.

Brent crude futures rose to just over $56 a barrel after the attack, but later eased back according to Reuters, with analysts saying that the attack had not disrupted supplies.

According to the new agency, Syria has limited oil production, but its location in the Middle East and links with big oil producers had sparked broader worries that the conflict might spread and disrupt oil shipments elsewhere.

The barrage of Tomahawk missiles, fired from two US Navy vessels located in the Mediterranean Sea, targeted Al Shayrat air base in the central city of Homs, from which Syrian aircraft staged Tuesday’s chemical weapons attack, which killed up to 100 people. 

Elsewhere in financial markets the dollar fell overnight, but US stocks were little changed on Friday morning.

Assets considered safest during periods of geopolitical uncertainty, including gold, Japan’s yen and some government bonds, rose.

The yield on the 10-year US Treasury fell to 2.3 per cent, a level last seen in November. Yields fall as bond prices rise.  

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