Oil has been front and center in headlines and stock markets since an attack was carried out against oil facilities in Saudi Arabia last Saturday. No one was hurt. But Saudi Arabia exports more oil than any other country. And half of its production was temporarily disrupted. That caused a surge in oil prices when international stock markets opened on Monday. Oil is sold by the barrel. Each barrel is equal to 42 gallons. A barrel of Brent crude oil, a world standard, was selling for around $60 a barrel last Friday before the attack happened.
Afterward on Monday, the price of Brent crude had risen to almost $72 at one point. That was its biggest increase in history. And it had an impact on stock markets around the world. But the higher price didn't hold. Yesterday it had settled back down to less than $64 a barrel. The reasons why — The Reuters News Agency reported that Saudi Arabian oil production would be back to normal in two to three weeks. And on Tuesday the Middle Eastern country's energy minister said that Saudi Arabia would use its reserves around the world to make sure its oil exports would stay the same despite the damaged facility. So stock market investors saw all this as good news for the worlds oil supply and prices decreased.
Meantime, an international investigation is trying to figure out who conducted the attack. A United States government official told CNN that circuit boards from one of the weapons used have been recovered and they indicate that both drones and missiles were used in the attack. The official says Iran is a suspect though that country denies being involved. We mentioned that Saudi Arabia has oil reserves available to decrease the impact of a disruption like this. The U.S. also has storage facilities known as the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. President Donald Trump said yesterday that he doesn't think oil from that will be needed right now. But he indicated that the U.S. is prepared to open the reserve if necessary.
而在周一之后，布伦特原油的价格一度涨至近72美元一桶 。这创造了有史以来油价的最大涨幅 。同时对全球股市产生了影响 。但油价没有持续走高 。昨天，油价回落至不到64美元一桶 。原因是什么？据路透社报道，沙特石油产量将在两到三周后恢复正常 。中东国家沙特的能源部长在周二表示，尽管石油设施受损，但沙特将动用其在全球的储备来确保石油出口保持正常 。因此，股市投资者认为这一切对全球供应来说是好消息，所以油价回落 。
与此同时，一项国际调查正在努力确定袭击的幕后黑手 。一名美国政府官员对CNN表示，袭击中使用的其中一个武器的电路板已被回收，经查袭击很可能既使用了无人机也使用了导弹 。该官员表示，伊朗有嫌疑，但该国否认参与袭击 。我们刚才提到，沙特有可用的石油储备，可以减少这种破坏造成的影响 。美国同样也有石油储备设施，名为战略石油储备 。唐纳德·特朗普总统昨天表示，他认为目前不需要动用战略石油储备 。但他同时表示，如果有必要，美国准备释放石油储备 。
1. front and center 在（或进入）最重要位置；
Through the course of a project, put the core mission front and center.
2. be equal to （大小、数量、价值等）相同的，同样的；相等的；
One unit of alcohol is equal to half a pint of beer.
3. back to normal 恢复正常；
After the adverts, the presenter tried to pretend that everything was back to normal.
4. be prepared to do sth. 愿意（做…）的；
The world will be different, and we will have to be prepared to adapt to the change/