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Wed Jan 4, 2012, 03:42 PM

Oil Soars Close To 8-Month Highs On Iran Tensions [View all]

LONDON Oil prices spiked close to eight-month highs on Wednesday as traders fretted over heightened tensions between key crude producer Iran and the United States over transit through the Gulf.

The market also found solid support in a stream of positive economic data which boosted the outlook for the global economy and energy demand.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in February, spiked to $103.74, a leval last touched on May 11. The contract fell back to $102.61, down 35 cents from Tuesday's closing level.
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"Alongside the return of economic optimism, oil is also finding support from the continuing tensions between Iran and the United States as sabre-rattling is stepped up on both sides," said Commerzbank analyst Eugen Weinberg.

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