All data is delayed
See More

Oil falls on profit-taking

Aug 17 2012 08:07

Singapore - World oil prices tumbled in Asian trade on Friday as traders cashed in gains from a recent rally, analysts said.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) light sweet crude for delivery in September, was down 37 cents to $95.23 a barrel and Brent North Sea crude for October delivery sank 67 cents to $114.60.

Prices rallied in New York following encouraging jobs and housing figures in top crude consumer the United States, with WTI hitting fresh three-month highs.

The black gold was finding support, however, on news of a cyber attack against Saudi Arabian oil giant Aramco as well as rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.

"Saudi Aramco has said that its computer systems have been hit by a virus," British bank Barclays said in a market commentary.

The Saudi oil giant has said the attack has not affected production.

However, Barclays added that in a market that is starting to focus more on geopolitical issues in the Middle East, the idea that there may be parties intending to sabotage oil operations is likely to be unsettling.

It said "any attack against facilities that did cause any significant physical disruption of Saudi flows would open up the extreme upside for oil, in the context of the current deterioration of the geopolitical context for the Middle East as a whole".

The cyber attack on Saudi Arabia comes as fighting continues in Syria between rebel forces and the government of Bashar al-Assad, while Iran remains in a standoff with Western powers over its controversial nuclear programme.

* Follow Fin24 on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

commodities  |  markets  |  oil



Read Fin24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Company Snapshot

We're Talking About...

Savings Month

It's never too late to start saving. Visit our special issue and add your voice.

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...

Voting Booth

The proposal to nationalise SARB will

Previous results · Suggest a vote