Oil prices reached a 2019 high today as traders worry over the stability of supplies from Iran and Venezuela.
The price of international standard Brent crude reached $69.50 per barrel in the early hours, and edged close to that price again closer to midday.
Prices have since dropped and the oil is currently trading at $69.27, a 0.38 per cent increase on the day.
“The $70 per barrel price level is within striking distance,” said Julius Baer analyst Norbert Ruecker, while warning this could have bad effects.
“Any further oil price increase would begin to bear more harmful economic consequences for most emerging markets.”
It comes amid reports that the administration of US President Donald Trump is mulling more sanctions against Iran.
“We just want a continued chilling effect,” an unnamed senior official told reporters yesterday. “We want businesses to continue to think doing business with Iran is a terrible idea at this point.”
The sanctions could come into force in May, Reuters reported, which marks the one-year anniversary of Trump ripping up the nuclear agreement with Iran signed by his predecessor Barack Obama.
Meanwhile, a key exporting terminal in Venezuela has shut down. The country, which is in the middle of a political crisis, has also been sanctioned by the US.