Brent oil hits highest since 2014 before U.S. sanctions on Iran bite

LONDON (Reuters) – Brent crude oil hovered close to its highest since November 2014 on Monday, supported by supply concerns before U.S. sanctions against Iran come into force next month. December Brent crude futures LCOc1 were up 23 cents at $82.96 a barrel at 1121 GMT, having touching their highest in almost four years at $83.32. U.S. light crude CLc1 was up 15 cents at $73.40. “Saudi Arabia are signaling that they do not have a lot of prompt spare capacity available, or that they don’t have the will to really use it on a proactive basis,” said Petromatrix strategist Olivier Jakob. “There’s nothing right now that gives a strong incentive to be a strong seller of the market.” Investors have indicated that they see prices rising, loading up on options that give the holder the right to buy Brent crude at $90 a barrel by the end of October. Open interest in call options at $90 a barrel has risen by nearly 12,000 lots in the past week to 38,000 lots, or 38 million barrels. Higher oil prices and dollar strength, which has battered the currencies of several big crude importers, could hit demand growth next year, analysts said.… continue reading

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