Oil prices rose to fresh 2019 highs on Tuesday, supported by firm Chinese economic data that eased demand concerns, the possibility of more sanctions on Iran and further Venezuelan supply disruptions. Positive data from the world’s biggest economies, the United States and China bolstered prices, with China’s manufacturing sector unexpectedly returning to growth for the first time in four months during March, figures showed on Monday.
U.S. government is considering additional sanctions against Iran that would target areas of its economy that have not been hit before, a senior Trump administration official told reporters on Monday.The official also suggested that the U.S. may not extend waivers from sanctions on Iranian oil exports to a group of eight importers that expire next month.
“That, I think, is where we’re headed,” the official said.
Venezuela’s Jose crude export terminal has halted operations due to a lack of electricity supply, two sources with knowledge of the situation said, after restarting on Friday following a prolonged blackout.Production cuts from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) helped push the group’s supply to a four-year low in March, a Reuters survey found.
The world’s biggest exporter, Saudi Arabia, over-delivered on the group’s supply-cutting pact while Venezuelan output fell further due to U.S. sanctions and earlier power outages.