Oil Prices Spike Above $90 A Barrel As Iran-Israel Tensions Escalate: US Energy Stocks Eye 9th Week Of Gains


U.S. energy stocks, as tracked by the Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund XLE, could potentially notch their ninth straight positive week, marking the longest pace of weekly gains since May 2007.

Oil prices surged sharply on Friday following reports suggesting that an Iranian assault on Israel could potentially occur within the next 48 hours. The Times of Israel reported that “Iran attack of 100 drones, dozens of missiles could be launched at Israel today.”

The Israeli Minister of National Security convened a meeting with top officials from the police, civil defense, and emergency services to ensure their readiness for a potential Iranian strike, as reported by Sky News Arabia.

The White House confirmed on Friday that Iran’s threats to Israel are “real and credible,” emphasizing that the United States intends to do everything it can to ensure that Israel is able to defend itself.

Adding to the rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, the Foreign Office of the United Kingdom has cautioned its citizens against traveling to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory due to the “possibility of an attack on Israeli territory from Iran."

The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) light crude, as tracked by the United States Oil Fund USO spiked 2.8% to above $87 a barrel, while Brent prices surged to $91 a barrel, reaching the highest levels in seven months.

Crude is up by 22% year-to-date, while shares of major U.S. energy companies have risen 16%.

Chart: US Energy Stocks Eye 9-Week Of Gains

Energy Stocks Rising Friday

During a day characterized by notably heightened market volatility, with the CBOE VIX surging by more than 20%, U.S. energy stocks emerged as the sole S&P 500 sector to remain in positive territory.

Here is a snapshot of the top 10 performers within the XLE ETF on Friday.

Name1-Day %
Occidental Petroleum Corporation OXY2.25%
Diamondback Energy, Inc. FANG1.36%
Marathon Oil Corporation MRO1.05%
Devon Energy Corporation DVN1.03%
Exxon Mobil Corporation XOM0.95%
Pioneer Natural Resources Company PXD0.90%
Targa Resources Corp. TRGP0.72%
EQT Corporation EQT0.60%
APA Corporation APA0.60%
ConocoPhillips COP0.58%
Updated at 11:30 a.m. ET

Read Now: Inflation Upends Fed’s Plans: When Do Wall Street Analysts Expect First Interest Rate Cut?

Image: Shutterstock

Market News and Data brought to you by Benzinga APIs
Posted In: EquitiesSector ETFsCommoditiesGlobalTop StoriesIntraday UpdateETFsGazaIranisraelMiddle EastOilStories That Matter
Benzinga simplifies the market for smarter investing

Trade confidently with insights and alerts from analyst ratings, free reports and breaking news that affects the stocks you care about.

Join Now: Free!