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Oil jumps amid escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine

Oil well pump jacks operated by Chevron Corp. in San Ardo, California, U.S., on Tuesday, April 27, 2021.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Oil prices jumped in afternoon trading Friday amid escalating tensions between Ukraine and Russia, with the U.K. advising British nationals to leave Ukraine immediately.

A Downing Street spokesperson also said Prime Minister Boris Johnson feared for the “security of Europe in the current circumstances.”

The spokesperson added that Russian President Vladimir Putin “had to understand that there would be severe penalties that would be extremely damaging to Russia’s economy, and that Allies needed to continue with efforts to reinforce and support the Eastern frontiers of NATO.”

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures, the U.S. oil benchmark, rose 4.7% to trade at $94.21 per barrel. It’s the contract’s highest price since 2014.

International benchmark Brent crude also rose to its highest level in more than seven years, jumping 4% to trade at $95.18 per barrel.

Oil prices had already been up more than 2% earlier in the session following the International Energy Agency’s latest oil report.

The firm now expects global demand to hit a record 100.6 million barrels per day this year “as restrictions to contain the spread of Covid ease.”

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