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Oil prices have been on a wild ride for the last 24 hours, and that ride may continue after a mishap in the Suez Canal that is raising concerns about the availability of a much-needed global oil supply.
A huge container ship, trying to be a ship's version of a square peg trying to fit into a round hole, got stuck while there are early reports the ship may be free soon, oil volatility has ramped up pushing prices back above the $60-per-barrel level.
UNITED STATES OIL FUND L.P.
The MV Ever Given, a 400-meter-long container ship, is now lodged in one of the narrowest parts of the canal and could be stuck for days.
The reason why that is critical is that the Suez Canal is one of the most strategic routes for Persian Gulf oil and natural gas shipments to Europe and North America. It, along with the Sumed Pipeline, accounts for 9% of the world’s seaborne oil trade according to EIA data. There are reports of at least 100 vessels that are stuck behind this ship with its cargo locked in limbo. Some of that oil was destined for the United States.