Price Of Oil Rises As Iran Possibly Halts Exports To Some EU Countries

As West Texas Intermediate crude prices surge on US fundamentals, geopolitical considerations and infrastructure bottleneck alleviation, the Brent-WTI spread is now razor thin. The US benchmark’s discount to Brent fell to less than $2 per barrel for the first time since 2010 – WTI’s price climbed to 15-month highs – as crude for August delivery broke above $106/bbl yesterday.  [Bloomberg]

Russian gas giant Gazprom continues to defend oil-linked pricing for its European natural gas contracts, but one of its largest customers – German utility RWE – is fighting hard for gas-indexed contracts. Arbitration proceedings last month determined RWE overpaid for oil-indexed gas. This situation gets uglier every day. [Natural Gas Europe]

Energy security is of utmost importance to the US military, which is one of the world’s largest energy consumers, and securing access to that fuel is motivating the Department of Defense to spend almost $1 bn on hybrid, electric and biofuel compatible vehicles by decade end, according to new research. “The Department of Defense has become one of the largest supporters of alternative drive vehicles, and plans to acquire only ADVs for its light duty non-tactical vehicle fleet from the end of 2015 onward,” says Scott Shepard, research analyst at Navigant Research. [Navigant]