The second apparent attack on oil tankers in the Middle East in a month rekindled tensions in the region and had the oil market forget, at least for a day, the increasingly gloomy outlook on global oil demand growth.
Oil prices jumped on Thursday when news of the suspected tanker attacks broke, due to the geopolitically stocked fear of supply disruptions.
However, the latest incidents near the world’s most important oil flow chokepoint, the Strait of Hormuz, could have a lasting impact on the price of oil as ship owners, marine brokers, insurers, and reinsurers are already lifting premiums for insuring tankers passing through the region and are charging higher freight rates for shipping oil out of the Middle East.
On Thursday, two oil tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman, just outside the Strait of Hormuz, which connects the Persian Gulf with the Gulf of Oman and the open seas. The daily flows of oil through the Strait of Hormuz accounts for around 30 percent of all seaborne-traded crude oil and other liquids.