As Squeeze Tightens on Iran, Fuel Prices—for Now—Reflect Calm
Iran faces mounting pressure over its nuclear program at a time of bountiful oil supply and weak demand. But how long can low gas prices last?
The question is whether that ebb will last, now that the flow of oil has been choked from ports of the world's third-largest crude exporter, the nation that provided 5 percent of the world's liquid-fuel supply last year. Global crude oil prices rose slightly after Iran renewed its threat to retaliate by blockading the Strait of Hormuz. But news of the continued weakness in the global economy—most notably, an anemic U.S. jobs report—kept the price increase in check.
(Interactive Map: Strait of Hormuz: The World's Key Oil Choke Point)
The relative oil market calm lends support to the view of many energy analysts: The squeeze on Iran, from the point of oil-consuming nations, couldn't have happened at a better time. Demand