War drums are getting louder.
All after the Pentagon released declassified images showing the sustained damage from one of the two oil tankers attacked last week. In fact, they note the crew of the Japanese Kokuka Courageous found an unexploded mine on its hull after the initial explosion.
“An Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Gashti Class patrol boat approached Kokuka Courageous and was observed and recorded by a U.S. Navy MH-60 helicopter removing the unexploded limpet mine from Kokuka Courageous,” the Pentagon said, as quoted by CNBC. “Iran is responsible for the attack based on the video evidence and the resources and the proficiency needed to quickly remove the unexploded limpet mine.”
John Bolton: America Ready to Retaliate
White House National Security Adviser John Bolton said that while the U.S. is willing to talk to Iranian leaders to ease tensions, it’s also ready for military action.
So far, the U.S has deployed an aircraft carrier strike group led by the USS Abraham Lincoln, as well as B-52 bombers to the region. The U.S. also sent another 1,000 troops to the Middle East for defensive purposes to address air, naval, and ground-based threats.
A squadron of American F-15E Strike Eagles also just arrived in the United Arab Emirates.
Along with a threat of war, oil prices could accelerate higher, too.
Iran has already warned that the “first bullet fired in the Persian Gulf will push oil prices above $100. This would be unbearable to America, Europe and the U.S. allies like Japan and South Korea,” as quoted by CNBC.
As a result of any military action, keep an eye on oil stocks, including ETFs, such as:
SPDR Energy Select Sector ETF (XLE)
The Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund seeks to provide investment results that, before expenses, correspond generally to the price and yield performance of the Energy Select Sector Index. It also seeks to provide precise exposure to companies in the oil, gas and consumable fuel, energy equipment and services industries. Some of its top holdings include Exxon Mobil, Chevron Corporation, ConocoPhillips, EOG Resources, and Occidental Petroleum.
Invesco DB Oil Fund (DBO)
This ETF seeks to track changes, whether positive or negative, in the level of the DBIQ Optimum Yield Crude Oil Index Excess Return plus the interest income from the Fund’s holdings of primarily US Treasury securities and money market income less the Fund’s expenses. It trades WTI crude futures, and traded at $9.24.
iShares Global Energy ETF (IXC)
The iShares Global Energy ETF seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of global equities in the energy sector. Trading at $31, some of its top holdings include Exxon Mobil, Chevron Corporation, BP PLC, Total SA, and EOG Resources.