Oil prices flat as Middle East tensions grow

<p>Oil prices are flat as tensions in the Middle East continue to grow.</p>

Oil prices are flat in trading this morning (November 16th) as tensions surrounding the Middle East continue to grow.

Trading has been choppy this week, as violence between Israel and Hamas have caught the attention of investors.

Hamas fired dozens of rockets into southern Israel, causing three deaths, while Israel has launched a number of air strikes across the Gaza Strip.

These events between Israel and Palestine do not directly threaten supplies of the commodity, but oil markets are in general sensitive to what is happening in the Middle East, which is responsible for pumping one-third of the world's supply of crude.

Speaking to Reuters, Dominick Chirchella of the New York Energy Management Institute commented: "Until there is a clear sign that the instability in the region is spreading toward the oil-producing states, market participants are likely to approach this situation with caution."

At 10:50 GMT, Brent Crude Oil Futures were steady at $108.05 per barrel, while West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil Futures were 0.2 per cent lower at $85.57 per barrel.

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