Oil markets have been particularly bullish of late thanks to escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran, but it will take continued geopolitical shocks to keep oil prices at these levels.
U.S. stockpiles are weighing heavily on speculation and the Fed has been hinting at rate cuts, but drone strikes and the threat of a direct conflict between Iran and the U.S. has undoubtedly taken center stage this week.
Oil markets had no idea how to interpret Trump’s comment on Thursday that he believed Iran did not intentionally shoot down the drone. This comment came after he initially (and vaguely) stated that Iran had made a “big mistake”, sending oil prices through the roof. On Friday morning he again tried to calm tensions by adding that he is in “no rush” to confront Iran, and amid reports that he called off airstrikes against Iranian targets at the very last minute on Thursday.
Claims coming out of the White House that its Iran strategy has been effective are being undermined by the fact that none of Washington’s moves have made Iran more compliant - quite the opposite in fact. We expect an increase in brinkmanship over the coming days and specifically in the run-up to the July 7 deadline when Iran says it will resume uranium enrichment. But watch Israel: The Israelis are furious at Trump’s statements, which suggest he is backing down (a reflection of the on-and-off influence of Pompeo and Bolton). Israel will attempt…