Oil rose 2.5 percent on Monday to its highest price since mid-October, fueled by supply concerns as violence in the Middle East escalated and as investors grew more hopeful that a U.S. budget crisis will be averted.

Traders focused on the growing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel bombed dozens of targets in the Gaza Strip on Monday and said that while it was prepared to step up its offensive by sending in troops, it preferred a diplomatic solution that would end Palestinian rocket fire.

Continue reading →