After President Trump authorized a military strike killing a top Iranian military commander, the escalating conflict sent stocks down around the world, and oil and gold prices up on the first Monday of the new year.

Brent oil prices, the international benchmark, hit the $70 mark for the first time in three months and the price of West Texas Intermediate, the American oil benchmark, reached more than $63 a barrel after the Pentagon's announcement confirming an airstrike at Baghdad's airport. Crude oil last hit the $70 mark in September after drones suspected to have been launched by Iran struck Saudi Arabian oil plants. Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Iraq account for almost half of the world's oil reserves.

Prices are up amid a growing list of concerns after the killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani: Iran may close the Strait of Hormuz, has already threatened retaliation, and said it will no longer abide by the 2015 nuclear deal the U.S. withdrew from two years ago, and Iraq voted to expel U.S. troops. The State Department warned of a "heightened risk" of a missile attack near U.S. bases.

It is unclear how Iran will respond to Trump's unilateral move. Oanda's Jeffrey Halley noted that "a big fat dollop of geopolitical uncertainty has landed on investors desks" in a report.

But J. Jay Park, CEO of ReconAfrica, said the geopolitical uneasiness isn't, alone, enough to continue driving oil prices up. He said what may continue to drive up prices is a change in supply. Park said supply, demand, OPEC decisions and compliance, geopolitics, and public sentiment about those four items affect oil prices. Uncertainty in Iran, coupled with a change in supply or demand may change the game. Iran may choose to close the Strait of Hormuz, a move Britain has forestalled by sending the Royal Navy to help ships pass through the Strait, through which 21 percent of 2018's global petroleum liquids consumption flowed.

"If that were to happen, the sky's the limit, over $100 easily," Park told Cheddar on Monday.

With the region on edge, stocks fell in Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and across European markets.

In the meantime, Park said the current crisis may not drive up oil prices further.

"In the recent past we've seen a number of conflicts, for example the suspected Iranian attack on Abqaiq in Saudia Arabia, that kind of underwhelmed in terms of the extent to which these changes affected the overall price and how long that effect lasted," he said.

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