Oil price jumps after US strike on Syria
The price of oil has hit its highest level for a month in response to the US military’s missile attack on a Syrian government airbase.
Brent crude surged above $56 a barrel, but later fell back to just over $55.
Syria has limited oil production, but its location in the Middle East and alliances with big oil producers raised worries about a spreading conflict that could disrupt crude shipments.
European markets opened lower, but London’s FTSE 100 gained ground later.
By mid-afternoon, it was in positive territory, up 0.38% at 7,330.67. However, Frankfurt’s Dax and the Paris Cac index remained 0.43% and 0.14% lower respectively.
Other asset classes seen as havens in times of trouble made gains. Gold prices were up 0.8% at $1,264.30 an ounce.
The dollar’s performance was mixed, falling slightly against the yen.
However, it rose modestly against sterling, the euro and the Swiss franc.
Earlier in Asian markets, energy shares rose as a result of the airstrike, giving a boost to Japan’s Nikkei index, which closed up 0.36% at 18,664.
Analysts said the market impact of the attacks was likely to be short-lived, since the US had described it as a “one-off”.
“It was a knee-jerk reaction because markets are starting to come back a little, as it doesn’t seem like there will be further retaliation coming,” said Christoffer Moltke-Leth at Saxo Capital Markets in Singapore.