Reflections of a Texan

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

FOXNews.com - Oil Eases to Just Below $71 After Record High Day - Energy

FOXNews.com - Oil Eases to Just Below $71 After Record High Day - Energy

All I know, is I am a pretty reasonable person, but oil and gas prices are getting out of hand. Not so much as far as hurting the economy, but for the sheer fact that many people trade oil futures to simply make money quickly. According to the U.S. government there is plenty of gasoline in the system and there are fewer gallons being used this year than the same time last year. (I'll post a link to the report in a future update.)

So what's the deal. I'll tell you. in the words of Bill O'Reilly, oil speculators are making a killing at the expense of the American people. These people drive up oil and gas prices by claiming a a shortage, while all of the data says otherwise. The fact that Iran is run by a madman plays directly into their hands. Need more cash, simply claim that the world's oil supply is in jeopardy because of Iran and drive the price up.

A relatively mild winter, fewer gallons being purchased and supply above demand, does not a gas shortage make, in the immortal words of Yoda.

UPDATE:

From Businessweek .com

Bolstering that sanguine view, the Energy Department this week released a report predicting gasoline prices would be 25-cents-per-gallon higher from April through September compared with last year, and average demand during the period would climb by 1.5 percent to 9.4 million barrels per day.

However, the nation's appetite for gasoline is not growing that fast right now, and the possibility of even higher prices in the months ahead has led some analysts to warn of a likely further cooling of demand.

For the first three months of the year, with gasoline futures averaging $1.70 a gallon, gasoline demand rose 0.9 percent compared with the year before, according to Energy Department data. In the first quarter of 2005, with gasoline futures averaging $1.37 a gallon, demand climbed by 1.4 percent compared with the prior year.

Demand for all refined products, which includes gasoline but also jet fuel, residual fuel and distillates such as diesel and heating oil, fell 0.8 percent during the first quarter, compared with a rise of 1.2 percent a year earlier. And globally, demand for oil grew by less than 1 percent in the first quarter, compared with a 2.3 percent jump the year before, the International Energy Agency said this week.


-- Jason

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