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Brent oil prices fell slightly today, but continued to be held near the level of $ 115 per barrel, near nine-month high, which is associated with an increased risk of supply disruptions from Iraq due to fighting between government forces and Sunni insurgents.
"The events unfolding in Iraq will continue to dictate the direction of the market and maintain oil prices at a high level", - said Barbara Lambrecht, an analyst at Commerzbank. Recall that in the last month, Iraq produced about 3.5 million barrels of oil per day, in connection with what is the 2nd largest producer of OPEC after Saudi Arabia.
It is worth noting that the Iraqi army is trying to discourage Sunni militants in the country's largest refinery with capacity of 300,000 barrels per day. If the plant does not resume work soon, Baghdad would have to increase imports of petroleum products. Fighting until they reached the south of Iraq, where most of the country's largest oil fields and export terminals, but foreign oil companies take out staff from the country.
U.S. President Barack Obama has sent to Iraq to 300 military advisers and said he was ready to "target" military action if the need arises. However, he said that American troops will not return to Iraq.
Meanwhile, markets are still considering the application of the Federal Reserve System, in which there is no indication of when interest rates may rise. In addition, the Fed forecast a rate hike in the long run declined from 4% to 3.75%. Central Bank decided to reduce its purchases of bonds by $ 10 billion a month to $ 35 billion, saying the U.S. economy is showing "quite steady growth" to continue the reduction program.
Cost of the August futures on U.S. light crude oil WTI (Light Sweet Crude Oil) rose to $ 106.49 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX).
August futures price for North Sea Brent crude oil mixture fell $ 0.20 to $ 114.68 a barrel on the London exchange ICE Futures Europe.