The global oil balance is already tighter than forecasters expected just a few months ago, because of disruptions in oil output from nations outside the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and by the effectiveness of sanctions against Iran, which is exporting about 750,000 to 1 million fewer barrels a day than it was a year ago.
“The story has been one of a strong stock market, a weaker dollar and continuing geopolitical events,” said Adam Sieminski, head of the federal Energy Information Administration.
He said political strife in Syria, Yemen and Sudan cut off some supplies while the latest price surge was “driven by central bank moves in both the U.S. and Europe” and by “optimism about the economy, which changes expectations about what demand will be going over the course of the next six to 12 months.”
CAIRO — Anti-American protests inspired by a video denigrating the Prophet Muhammad entered a fourth straight day here in the Egyptian capital and other demonstrations erupted in much of the Middle East after Friday Prayer — an occasion often associated with public displays of dissent.
Witnesses in Cairo said protests that first flared on Tuesday — the day J. Christopher Stevens, the American ambassador in Libya, was killed in an attack in neighboring Libya — continued sporadically early Friday, with protesters throwing rocks and gasoline bombs near the American Embassy and the police firing tear gas.
In Lebanon, one person was killed and 25 injured as protesters attacked restaurants, while in Sudan demonstrations flared outside of the German and British embassies. There was also turmoil in Yemen, Bangladesh, Qatar, Kuwait, and Iraq. Palestinians clashed with Israeli security forces in Jerusalem, and held protests in the West Bank and Gaza.