Brent crude oil ticked up on Friday morning and traded at 109.28 after data from the US pointed to a better global demand outlook and the threat of supply interruption in the Middle East lent support to the commodity.
The US released strong jobs data which added to mounting evidence that the nation was well on its way to a steady recovery. Unemployment benefit claims in the US dropped for the third week in a row, a sure sign that the economy was on the mend.
The news boosted the Dow Jones industrial average, which posted its 10th straight day of gains for the first time since 1996.
Also propping up Brent prices was an announcement by President Barack Obama that military action could be necessary in Iran if the debate over country's nuclear development program isn't resolved. On Thursday, Obama said the nation's nuclear technology was more than a year away from developing a nuclear weapon.
In the coming days, Western diplomats will attempt to persuade Iranian officials to curb their nuclear development in exchange for eased sanctions. The tension between the West and Iran has long kept Brent prices above $100.
Despite the recent gain, Brent could move lower throughout the month. According to CNBC, some analysts are expecting to see the commodity trading near $105 due to a lack of economic growth and weaker demand.
Although the fresh tension in Iran has helped support prices, many think that geopolitical risk from the region is already priced in.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Copyright Benzinga. All rights reserved.