Brent Rises as Syrian Civil War Threatens to Spread
By Laura Brodbeck | February 2, 2013 1:12 AM EST
Brent crude oil pushed toward $116 on Friday morning and began February supported by supply concerns stemming from tension in the Middle East. The commodity traded at $115.49 on Friday morning.
Gains were capped by poor economic data from China, whose purchasing managers' index was weaker than expected. The data took away from the nation's momentum, as investors who optimistically predicted that the energy consuming giant was recovering quickly were forced to consider that the country's stunted economy was making only a modest recovery.
However, conflicting data from HSBC showed that China's manufacturing sector reached a two year high in January; backing bullish traders who believe the Chinese economy is picking up.
Investors will also be watching for U.S. Non-Farm payroll data, which is set to be released at 1:30 GMT on Friday. Analysts are expecting the data to show a rise in jobs alongside a steady unemployment rate. The data, likely to be scoured for clues about the country's economic health and future fuel demand, could drag down oil prices if it falls short of expectations.
The largest driver of Brent prices at the moment is escalating tension in the Middle East as Syria continues a bloody civil war that threatens to break through the country's borders.
According to Reuters, Syrian officials went to the United Nations on Thursday to warn of a possible “surprise” response to the Israeli airstrike that took place on Wednesday.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tried to prevent the war from spreading by urging Russia and Iran to withdraw their support for Syria.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Copyright Benzinga. All rights reserved.
Most Popular Slideshows
- Real Life ‘Frozen’: Snow Overwhelms The US, Kills 7; More To Come (Pictures)
- Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt in Sydney for ‘Unbroken’ Red Carpet Premiere [PHOTOS]
- ‘The Walking Dead’ Season 5, Episode 8 Spoilers: Daryl Dixon Is Set To Burn The Place Down in ‘Coda’
- G20 Summit Awkward Moments: Putin Yawns, Mystery Bubbles Appear, F18 Drama Ensues
Join the Conversation
- Walmart Early Price Matching Special Event On Nov. 21, 2014 Matches Its Competitors' Black Friday 2014 Prices And Includes Exclusive Deals For Samsung LED HDTVs And iPad Air 2 [WATCH VIDEO]
- US Plane Flying Over Russian Skies Spotted; Vladimir Putin Ready For 'Practical Cooperation' With US
- Alleged 'Microsoft Lumia 1030' Front Panel Leaked With Capacitive Buttons; 'Xbox One' Owners To Get Free Goodies On Anniversary
- Nexus 6 Release Date And Price Under AT&T, T-Mobile And Sprint Listed
- Walmart Pre-Black Friday 2014 Sale On Nov. 21, 2014 Includes Discounts On The 'NBA 2K15' For PS4 And The 'Skylanders Trap Team’ Starter Kit [WATCH VIDEO]
- Black Friday 2014 Sale: Top Deals On Game Consoles Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Wii U And More
- Cold War 2: Russia, China And North Korea’s Blacklisted Company Fortify Alliance -- Reports