US oil prices raced above $65 a barrel on Monday for the first time since Halloween after the White House pledged to deepen its crackdown on Iran.
The Trump administration vowed to bring Iran’s oil exports to “zero” by removing the waivers that previously allowed some countries to buy crude from the OPEC nation.
The escalation adds to mounting supply concerns in the oil market. Venezuela’s oil shipments have been wiped out by US sanctions. Violence is rocking Libya. And Saudi Arabia has slashed its output.”The market will be under pressure and the prices will definitely react upward,” said Iman Nasseri, managing director for the Middle East at consulting firm Facts Global Energy.
President Donald Trump promised in a tweet that “Saudi Arabia and others in OPEC will more than make up” the difference. The oil market, however, signaled skepticism.