Europe's Iranian oil trap

A smouldering dispute over Iran's nuclear ambitions is pushing the price of oil to highs which, if sustained, could drag Europe further into recession.

The fragile global economy has been dealt a fresh blow, with oil prices hitting nine-month highs overnight as traders reacted to the escalating tensions over Iran’s nuclear program.

The European benchmark ICE Brent crude oil rose by close to 1 per cent to just under $US123 a barrel. Brent prices have now climbed by almost 10 per cent this month (or around $11 a barrel).

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