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HomeLatestOil Prices Rise on China Growth and Middle East Tensions
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Oil Prices Rise on China Growth and Middle East Tensions

Oil prices climbed on Tuesday, buoyed by stronger-than-expected economic growth in China and heightened tensions in the Middle East following Iran’s recent missile and drone attack on Israel.

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Brent futures for June delivery gained 20 cents, or 0.2%, reaching $90.30 a barrel by 0757 GMT. Meanwhile, U.S. crude futures for May delivery rose 21 cents, or 0.3%, to $85.62 a barrel.

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Earlier in the day, oil prices surged nearly 1% in response to official data from China revealing a 5.3% year-on-year growth in the country’s gross domestic product for the first quarter. This figure exceeded analysts’ expectations and signaled resilience in the world’s largest oil importer.

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However, gains in oil prices were moderated as additional Chinese economic indicators, including real estate investment, retail sales, and industrial output, underscored ongoing weakness in demand amid an enduring property crisis.

Oil prices had spiked last week to their highest levels since October but retreated on Monday following Iran’s attack on Israel, which turned out to be less damaging than initially feared. The reduced threat of a rapidly escalating conflict assuaged concerns about potential disruptions to crude oil supplies.

ANZ Research analysts noted on Tuesday that the extent of Israel’s response would determine whether the conflict abates or escalates further. While the conflict could potentially remain localized to Israel, Iran, and their respective proxies, there is a possibility of U.S. involvement.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened his war cabinet for the second time in less than 24 hours on Monday to deliberate on how to respond to Iran’s unprecedented direct attack on Israel.

Iran, a significant producer within the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), produces over 3 million barrels per day of crude oil, making its actions influential in global oil markets.

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