• 3 minutes "Biden Is Running U.S. Energy Security Into The Ground" by Irina Slav
  • 6 minutes How Far Have We Really Gotten With Alternative Energy
  • 9 minutes "How to Calculate Your Individual ESG Score to ensure that your Digital ID 'benefits' and money are accessible"
  • 7 hours GREEN NEW DEAL = BLIZZARD OF LIES
  • 8 days 87,000 new IRS agents, higher taxes, and a massive green energy slush fund... "Here Are The Winners And Losers In The 'Inflation Reduction Act'"-ZeroHedge
  • 7 days Energy Armageddon
  • 8 hours "Natural Gas Price Fundamental Daily Forecast – Grinding Toward Summer Highs Despite Huge Short Interest" by James Hyerczyk & REUTERS on NatGas
  • 2 days "Forget Oil, The Real Crisis Is Diesel Inventories: The US Has Just 25 Days Left" by Zero Hedge - 5 Stars *****
  • 3 days "The Global Digital ID Prison" by James Corbett of CorbettReport.com
  • 8 hours Oil Stocks, Market Direction, Bitcoin, Minerals, Gold, Silver - Technical Trading <--- Chris Vermeulen & Gareth Soloway weigh in
  • 2 days "Europe’s Energy Crisis Has Ended Its Era Of Abundance" by Irina Slav
  • 3 days The Federal Reserve and Money...Aspects which are not widely known
  • 4 days Is Europe heading for winter of discontent with extensive gas shortages?
  • 7 days Сryptocurrency predictions
  • 4 days Goldman Betting on Cryptocurrencies
  • 12 days Putin and Xi Bet on the Global South
Nigeria’s Oil Industry Can Flourish Despite Oil Theft

Nigeria’s Oil Industry Can Flourish Despite Oil Theft

While Nigeria’s oil industry is…

The U.S. Shale Boom Is Officially Over

The U.S. Shale Boom Is Officially Over

While U.S. oil and gas…

Russian Hackers Target Dutch LNG Terminal

Russian Hackers Target Dutch LNG Terminal

Russian hackers appear to be…

James Stafford

James Stafford

James Stafford is the Editor of Oilprice.com

More Info

Premium Content

This Week in Energy: Oil Price Predictions and a Potential U.S. Strike on Syria

Our take on oil price predictions and the anxiety over a potential US strike on Syria …

The specter of a US strike on Syria continues to haunt us, as talking heads debate whether the Obama administration is attempting to delay by asking for Congress’ permission, or whether it’s just hoping to have someone with whom to share the blame for an eventual strike.

As it stands, lawmakers aren’t giving the idea much support. The public opposition is too high, and enough lawmakers seem to feel that supporting a strike on Syria would be tantamount to ending their careers.

Throughout all of this, there is plenty of debate on what a strike on Syria would mean for oil prices, and for the economy in general.

It depends who you ask—a Syrian strike could either lead to a major spike in oil prices, or the reverse.

According to Forbes, “the flight of the tomahawks threatens to tank equities further, but if history is any indicator, declines should be short-lived and more of a buying opportunity than anything else. The one big thing to watch though is oil prices, which could spike and derail the tepid global economic recovery.”

What would cause a spike would not be what happens in Syria, directly; rather the potential snowball effect. If Iraq—which is already the second frontline in this conflict—sees its oil infrastructure attacked, for instance, this could cause a major spike in oil prices.

Something like this, though, is extremely difficult to predict. Iraq’s involvement in the Syrian conflict is in the form of a connection between Sunni jihadists who are operating in both conflict theaters. This cross-border activity has now sparked a similar cross-border exchange among Shi’ites in Iraq who are helping to boost Hezbollah forces fighting alongside the Assad regime in Syria. This is leading to a major increase in sectarian violence among Sunnis and Shi’ites in Iraq. Each month the death toll is higher as the violence increases in tandem with what is going on in Syria—and the bodies coming back home to Iraq for burial. An attack on Iraq’s oil infrastructure would have to come from the Sunni support base—not the Shi’ites, who control the country and who have a vested interest in Iraqi oil. In turn, a Sunni attack on Iraq’s oil infrastructure would be one way of retaliation for an Assad victory in Syria. It would be a strike against the Iraqi Shi’ite leadership and their nominal Iranian supporters. But it would be in no-one’s clear interest at this time, not Tehran’s and not Washington’s.  

Another factor that would contribute to a spike in oil prices would be Iran’s response to a US strike on Syria. Iran holds the Strait of Hormuz card. This key oil transit point could be closed off by Iran, theoretically, which would be economically devastating to the US. But remember that there is a new president in Iran, and if he can maintain control over the situation, this will not happen. Iran’s new president and his new oil minister are desperately seeking to get back into the global oil and gas game, and closing the strait would kill these ambitions.  

We are inclined to disagree with the talking heads expressing themselves through Forbes. It is more the run-up to a potential military intervention that sends oil prices soaring, not the intervention itself, which has historically had the opposite effect. Why? Because almost every military intervention is pinned on opening up more oil opportunities, and the vultures descend. For Syria, the prospects are some lucrative pipeline routes and the potential offshore, where Israel has already made some big finds and Lebanon will eventually start exploring once it is unburdened by the violence and political chaos spilling over from Syria. The grand finale of the Syrian conflict might even see the Syrian Kurdish north become the next Iraqi Kurdistan in terms of oil and gas exploration.

Remember what happened in Libya? The pre-intervention nerves were on edge, leading to rising oil prices, but once the tomahawks were in the air and all that Libyan oil was becoming a reality in the minds of the eager, oil prices dropped.

We will continue to follow the events in Syria over the coming weeks, both in our regular publications and more in-depth in our weekly premium newsletter, Oil & Energy Insider.

Premium this week is one of our best yet and is a must read for energy investors who are looking to find out the next 5 trends the oil & gas industry are investing in and where early investors will make huge gains. Energy investors only need to catch one trend to make fabulous returns – find out the 5 trends we believe are going to be major profit centers for the oil sector for the coming years and the companies we believe will benefit most in this week’s Inside Investor.

We also have a superb report from our new writer, Dave Forest that looks at developments taking place in offshore horizontal drilling and two companies that could see their stock prices shoot up. (This is not a report to miss.)

Read these reports and get full access to our archives with a 30 day Free trial to Oilprice Premium. Click here to start your free trial.

That’s it from us this week.

James Stafford
Editor, Oilprice.com


Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage





Leave a comment

Leave a comment




EXXON Mobil -0.35
Open57.81 Trading Vol.6.96M Previous Vol.241.7B
BUY 57.15
Sell 57.00
Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News