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An Iranian navy boat tries to control the fire on Norwegian-owned Front Altair tanker. Photo: Tasmin News/AFP/Getty Images

Two big forces are tugging on the global oil market: the weakening global economy and rising geopolitical tensions over tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman.

Where it stands: The weakening economy is carrying a lot of weight despite the spike in tensions from the U.S. blaming Iran for yesterday's violence near the Strait of Hormuz, which is the world's biggest oil choke point.

  • Prices, which rose after the attacks, dipped Friday as the International Energy Agency cut its estimate for 2019 oil demand growth to 1.2 million barrels per day.
  • They've since recovered some ground but are still down overall this week.

Why it matters: The muted price response despite the tanker attacks is likely a sign of the faltering global economy.

  • "World trade growth has fallen back to its slowest pace since the financial crisis ten years ago," IEA noted in its closely watched monthly report.

What to watch: Whether the economic headwinds or the threat of more and wider conflict will hold more sway. RBC Capital Markets' Helima Croft summed up the competing forces in a CNBC interview yesterday.

  • The question this summer, she said, will be this: "What war is going to dominate the market? A trade war or a shooting war?”

What's next: Looking at 2020 for the first time, IEA sees demand growth recovering to 1.4 million barrels per day, "supported by solid non-OECD demand and petrochemicals expansion."

  • But there's more than enough barrels to meet it thanks to growth from the U.S., Brazil and elsewhere.
  • The report sees non-OPEC supply rising 2.3 million barrels per day in 2020.

But, but, but: Demand growth would be lower if U.S.-China trade battles worsen.

What they're saying: "A clear message from our first look at 2020 is that there is plenty of non-OPEC supply growth available to meet any likely level of demand, assuming no major geopolitical shock," IEA said.

  • They call this "welcome news" for consumers and the vulnerable global economy, "as it will limit significant upward pressure on oil prices."

Winners and losers: As Bloomberg notes, the report underscores OPEC's struggles. IEA sees demand for OPEC's crude falling to 29.3 million barrels daily next year, which is 650,000 barrels below May's output.

Go deeper: U.S. releases video claimed to depict Iran removing mine from targeted oil tanker

Go deeper

Oklahoma Supreme Court temporarily blocks abortion restrictions

A pro-choice activist demonstrates outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 4, 2021. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Monday temporarily blocked three abortion restrictions set to take effect on Nov. 1.

Why it matters: The laws would place new limits on medication-induced abortions and require doctors who perform abortions to attain board certification in obstetrics and gynecology.

U.S. freezes aid to Sudan over military coup

Protesting the coup in Khartoum. Photo: AFP via Getty

The Biden administration has frozen a $700 million aid package to Sudan after a military coup on Monday threatened to end the country's transition toward democracy.

Driving the news: At least three protesters have been killed and dozens wounded in the chaotic scenes that followed the announcements from Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan's ruling council, dissolving the government and declaring a state of emergency.

1 hour ago - Science

Blue Origin announces plan to develop commercial space station

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin on Monday unveiled plans to develop a commercial space station called "Orbital Reef."

Why it matters: The private space station, which will be nearly as large as the International Space Station, would be the first of its kind and comes amid growing interest in the private space industry.