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Real Time Insight

In 2014, investors have had the luxury of ignoring the commodities complex.

Gold and silver have sold off and investors have moved into other hot investments. Copper prices are lower, but not alarmingly so.

Crude, meanwhile, has been relatively quiet compared with the highs and lows of prior years. West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark, has traded between $90 and $100 a barrel for much of the year.

It's been so boring on the crude markets that investors have tuned it out and have focused on stocks and bonds instead.

But with Iraqi militants advancing towards Baghdad, suddenly, crude prices are jumping.

WTI has surged to 2014 highs, over $105 a barrel, and is up over 6% year to date.

Brent crude has also jumped to 8-month highs.

It's unclear if Iraqi production has even been impacted by the militant takeovers but the crude market appears to be trading on fears of the unknown.

Is the rise in crude prices a short term phenomena which will quickly abate or could it be a threat to the global recovery?



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