Dow slips, energy stocks rise

Business | 23 Apr 2019 12:12 pm

On Wall Street, the spike in crude oil prices boosted energy stocks on an otherwise listless Monday.

The broad S&P 500 was up by a  mere 0.1 percent at 2,907.97 while the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by 0.2 percent to 26,511.05. The Nasdaq composite picked up 0.2 percent at 8,015.27. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks shed 0.4 percent to 1,560.04.

On Monday, the Trump administration said it would no longer exempt any countries from U.S. sanctions if they continue to buy Iranian oil. The administration had granted eight waivers when it reimposed sanctions on Iran in November. These expire May 2.

Asian countries, namely China, India, Japan and South Korea are major importers of Iranian oil. The move will choke off more than $50 billion of annual Iranian income, which the U.S. says funds destabilizing activity in the Middle East and beyond.

“The prompt contracts quickly repriced higher on panic fears that markets could face an immediate supply crunch, adding more pressure to the already tenuous global supply squeeze,” Stephen Innes of SPI Asset Management said in a commentary.

Industry experts said the sanctions could potentially remove up to 1.2 million barrels of oil per day from international markets. But that number will likely be lower, depending on how countries respond and just how much oil Iran continues to export.-AP

 

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