UK Navy blocks Iranian attempt to capture BP tanker

Last week saw the UK get dragged into the simmering Middle East conflict between the US and Iran, when the Royal Navy had to intervene to prevent the Iranians from seizing a British tanker in the key shipping lane of the Strait of Hormuz.

While this act of aggression has got a lot of attention, it follows on from the UK seizing an Iranian oil tanker off the coast of Gibraltar last week and arresting the Captain. While the ship was suspected of breaking sanctions on Syria, the retaliation was hardly unexpected. This tit for tat state sponsored piracy can probably be resolved without further escalation.

Elsewhere the S&P 500 broke new highs and crossed 3000 for the first time. The sudden surge in equities came after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell was questioned in-front of Congress.

Rookie congress-woman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who bucked tradition by actually being prepared, got the governor to concede that the Phillips curve model, a mainstay of monetary policy, might indeed be broken.

This could pave the way for rates to be much lower even under normal conditions.