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Dire Straits Of Hormuz

Dire Straits Of Hormuz

Well, we didn’t have to wait long for ’John Wick: Chapter Portobello’ to begin, did we? Brent crude spiked 4.5% before giving up around half of those gains as a further two oil tankers–one Norwegian, one Japanese–were attacked in the Straits of Hormuz, forcing the evacuation of both vessels; that as Japanese PM Abe sat down with the Iranian government to try to dial down tensions with the US – and as the leadership refused to accept any message from President Trump. The US have now accused Iran of attacking the two ships, which follows on from two other recent tanker attacks, drones hitting Saudi oil pumps, and a missile hitting a Saudi airport this week. The easy market response was long oil, obviously, as well as a ‘Risk Off’ further leg down in bond yields. But who did this and why? And what does that say will happen next? Logically, it was either Iran, or the US, or a third party:

Iran is suffocating under US sanctions, a known instigator of such actions via proxies, and threatening the EU with walking away from the nuclear deal if they won’t help it out. An attack like this would be incredibly reckless…unless they are desperate enough to up the ante to see if a war-averse White House will press ahead with another ruinous Middle East conflict ahead of the 2020 elections and in the face of a Cold War with China. If that is the case then expect more provocations and more Risk Off even as Iran calls this all “beyond suspicious”, “economic terrorism”, and “sabotage diplomacy”.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

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