Oil Prices Hold Steady Despite US Airstrikes In Iraq

 @cristymsilvac.silva@ibtimes.com on August 11 2014 5:18 PM
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A member of the Kurdish security forces takes up position with his weapon as he guards a section of an oil refinery in Iraq's Kurdistan region. Reuters

Oil prices have remained steady despite the U.S. airstrikes on combatants from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in Iraq's crude-rich Kurdish region, according to CNN. The average price for a gallon of gasoline in the U.S. is $3.48, or less than it was a year ago, according to AAA. Meanwhile, crude oil is still priced at under $100 per barrel.

Most Iraqi oil comes from Baghdad and areas in the south of the country, while the worst fighting is in the north near Mosul, the second-largest city in Iraq, and Irbil, the Kurdish regional capital. The affected region contributes about 15 percent of Iraq's oil production, according to CNN. In all, Iraq is the No. 2 producer in the OPEC cartel, with 11 per cent of proven world reserves.

"Investors take comfort in the knowledge that insurgents will be contained in northern Iraq, away from the oil fields in Kurdistan," Desmond Chua, market analyst at CMC Markets in Singapore, told the Economic Times.

President Barack Obama authorized airstrikes Thursday against ISIS targets and airdrops to aid Iraq’s Christian and Yazidi minorities stranded in the northern part of the country and Kurdish forces. 

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