Government, Finance - Oil, Defense Soar After Iran Attack
Iranian missiles aren't the only things heading skyward - oil prices and defense stocks soared upon word that Iran struck back at the US for last week's assassination of a top military figure.
Iran launched more than a dozen of ballistic missiles at two Iraqi air bases where US troops are stated: Al-Asad west of Baghdad, and another base near Erbil in the semi-autonomous Kurdish north. The Revolutionary Guard Corps (IEGC) issued a statement reading, "The brave soldiers of IRGC's aerospace unit have launched a successful attack with tens of ballistic missiles on Al Asad military base in the name of martyr General Qassem Soleimani."
And with that, US crude jumped more than four percent in after-hours trading, from US$62.70 at the close of Tuesday's regular trading to as high as $65.48 a barrel. Rising oil prices could deal a blow to the world economy, which is already struggling from weak manufacturing activity.
While most stocks take a hit when investors fear a war, some do quite well. US defense contractor Lockheed Martin closed at 414.50 on Tuesday, but picked up 20 points in after-hours trading to about 434. Raytheon rose from 226 to 233. General Dynamics went from 180 to 185.