Brent Looks Likely To Post Another Loss
Brent crude oil looked poised to post its second consecutive weekly loss after losing ground on Thursday.
The commodity was steady at $108.04 at 7:00 GMT with geopolitical problems keeping a floor under prices.
Russian President Vladimir Putin's call for separatist rebel groups to postpone their succession vote in Ukraine may have been too little too late. Reuters reported that the pro-Russian activists have ignored Putin's appeal and plan to hold a vote on Sunday, which many believe will lead to a civil war.
As tension rises in the Eastern European nation, oil prices gained support as investors worried that an escalation in the conflict could lead to a disruption in Russia's oil supplies.
The relationship between the West and Russia has reached an all time low as the conflict in Ukraine presses on. With targeted sanctions against Russia already in place, the European Union has prepared further sanctions which will target Russian companies rather than individuals.
The new round of sanctions will focus on large Russian businesses, including some energy companies, in an effort to get Moscow to backtrack in Ukraine.
Problems in Libya also supported Brent prices as the government's plans to reopen the nation's oil ports hit a few snags. The nation's new Islamist-backed prime minister has proven unpopular among rebel groups.
Now, it is unclear whether rebels holding the country's eastern ports will follow through with their agreement to return the oilfields to the government.
Moving forward, all eyes will be on talks between Iran and world powers as leaders from around the world discuss how to end the dispute over Tehran's nuclear program. Next week, the group is set to meet in Vienna to discuss the future of Iran's atomic capabilities.
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