Oil opens higher as EU members weigh Russian oil ban By Reuters

Oil opens higher as EU members weigh Russian oil ban By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Russian state flag flies on the top of a diesel plant in the Yarakta Oil Field, owned by Irkutsk Oil Company (INK), in Irkutsk Region, Russia March 10, 2019. Picture taken March 10, 2019. REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko

Oil futures extended gains on Tuesday morning on news that some European Union members are considering imposing sanctions on Russian oil and as attacks on Saudi oil facilities sent jitters through the market.

Front-month West Texas Intermediate futures were up $2.21, or 1.97%, to $114.33 a barrel on NYMEX and futures were up $2.51, or 2.26%, to $118.23 a barrel on the Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE:) at 0014 GMT.

Both contracts had settled up more than 7% on Monday as the potential for more supply disruptions weighed on the market.

European Union foreign ministers are split on whether to join the United States in sanctioning Russian oil, with some countries including Germany arguing that the bloc is too dependent on Russia’s fossil fuels.

“The proposed ban is still some way from becoming policy because a significant number of EU nations oppose the ban,” analysts for Commonwealth Bank of Australia (OTC:) wrote in a note.

“Still, the fact that the ban is being discussed at all is a significant shift,” the note added.

At the same time, Saudi Arabia has warned it would not bear responsibility for disruptions to global oil supply following attacks on its oil facilities by Iranian-aligned Houthis.

The comments came after the group fired missiles and drones at Saudi oil facilities over the weekend, causing a temporary decline in refinery output.

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