How the U.S. and Israeli Presidents Are Affecting Your Pocketbook
By George Leong for Investment Contrarians
While the financial crisis continues to unfold across Europe, far deadlier tensions are rising in the Middle East. The market sentiment for oil prices should be bearish, given the current economic conditions; however, continued statements by leading members of Israel’s government about concerns regarding the potential for Iran to gain nuclear weapons has once again pushed up oil prices. The higher oil prices go, the harder it hits the average consumer.
This time, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is raising the stakes by potentially alienating U.S. President Barack Obama. Over the past few days, the political climate between Israel and the U.S. has certainly cooled. Among the verbal volleys are statements by the Israeli prime minister that no country, including the U.S., had the moral right to prevent a strike by Israel. Additionally, Israeli officials also came forward in denouncing what they see as lackadaisical U.S. foreign policy with regards to Iran.
Market sentiment regarding oil prices is naturally on the edge with any scenario that occurs in the Middle East. That region has been and will continue to be a powder keg; any spark could set off a massive spike in oil prices. This lightning-fast response by oil prices to any comment by political leaders is the reason many participants monitor the market sentiment very close.