Oil hits $71.75 on Saudi attacks

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Oil prices are rising as escalating tensions in the Middle East stoke fears about a global supply crunch.

Brent crude futures — the global benchmark — gained about 1.9 per cent earlier yesterday to trade at $71.75 a barrel. US crude oil futures gained about 1.6per cent to $62.48. Both markets pared those gains later as the escalating US-China trade war clouded the outlook for global oil demand growth.

Saudi Arabia said two of its oil tankers had been sabotaged off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), in attacks it said posed a threat to shipping and the security of global oil supplies.

Four tankers were targeted overall, according to the UAE, in what the country said was a “sabotage attack” that took place near the strategic port of Fujairah on Sunday.

A senior source at Saudi Arabia’s ministry of energy told CNN Business that the attacks were particularly alarming because the tankers were targeted outside the Strait of Hormuz.

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