Oil prices jump after Iraq missile attacks

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Oil prices have jumped after at least two airbases hosting US troops in Iraq were hit by ballistic missiles. There was also another tragic development hours after a Ukrainian Boeing 737 with 180 people on board has crashed shortly after take-off from Iran’s main international airport.

The Fars news agency says it came down due to technical problems after leaving the Imam Khomeini airport in Tehran.

There is no word yet on casualties.

An investigation team was at the site of the crash in southwestern outskirts of Tehran, civil aviation spokesman Reza Jafarzadeh said.

Brent crude was up by 2.5% at $69.94 per barrel in mid-morning Asian trade on concerns that this could disrupt oil supplies from the Middle East.

So-called safe haven assets, like gold and the Japanese yen, also rose sharply on the news.

At the same time global stock prices were sent lower on concerns over the growing conflict in the Middle East.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 stock index fell by 2%, and Hang Seng in Hong Kong was down 1% in early trade.

Iranian state television said the attack was a retaliation for the killing of the country’s top commander Qasem Soleimani.

Read more via Marketwatch/BBC/ Reuters

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