Oil eases as focus shifts from Iran tensions to U.S. crude build

Oil prices retreated further on Thursday, adding to sharp losses in the previous session as the market shifted focus toward rising U.S. crude stocks and away from worries about the conflict between the United States and Iran.

Broadly, prices were moving back toward where they stood before a Jan. 3 U.S. drone strike killed a top Iranian general, prompting an Iranian rocket attack on Iraqi air bases hosting U.S. forces. These events pushed crude to its highest in four months.

“The way the market gives a geopolitical risk premium and then takes it right back indicates that the market fundamentally isn’t very strong,” said Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut

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