Oil prices increased on Tuesday as the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine boosted fears that the clashes will turn into a regional turmoil that will disrupt oil supply routes.
International benchmark crude Brent traded at $86.61 per barrel at 10.55 a.m. local time (0755 GMT), a 0.30% rise from the closing price of $86.35 a barrel in the previous trading session on Monday.
The American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) traded at the same time at $82.58 per barrel, up 0.32% from Monday's close of $82.31 per barrel.
Oil prices spiked up amid rising supply worries fueled by the Israel's widening air and ground attacks on the Gaza Strip, which has been under relentless airstrikes since a cross-border attack by Hamas on Oct. 7.
The ongoing conflict between the two nations heighten concerns that the clashes might escalate into a regional turmoil that will disrupt oil supply routes, deepening the supply deficit predicted for the rest of the year.
Meanwhile, the fears of a possible disruption in Iranian oil flows, fueled by the US government's accusation of Iran of being responsible for the attacks on US forces in Syria and Iraq, put upward pressure on oil prices.
However, rising demand worries ahead of the US Federal Reserve (Fed) meeting on Wednesday which is anticipated to keep the policy rate high for longer than expected, limited upward price pressures.
Concerns that China, the world's largest oil importer, may see a downturn in oil consumption as a result of weaker-than-expected factory activity data also restrained additional price hikes.
By Duygu Alhan