Tags: Oil Prices

Oil Falls but Gasoline Prices Rise for 21st Day

Tuesday, 08 Mar 2011 10:45 AM

Oil prices retreated Tuesday as OPEC ministers discussed whether to ramp up oil production in the wake of the Libyan uprising.

Meanwhile, gasoline pump prices in the U.S. climbed for the 21st straight day, adding nearly a penny on Tuesday at $3.517 per gallon. A gallon of regular is 39.7 cents more expensive than a month ago and 76.4 cents higher than a year ago.

Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for April delivery fell 55 cents $1.64 to $104.893.81 per barrel on Tuesday. In London, Brent crude dropped $1.78 to $113.26 per barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.

The Libyan crisis has forced companies to evacuate workers, and most of the country's 1.6 million barrels of daily production has been shut down. Boosting production elsewhere would likely cool off overheated energy prices, but experts warn that doing so would weaken OPEC's ability to manage global supplies later this year.

Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy & Economic Research, said it also won't address the basic fear that has been pushing oil prices higher for the past few weeks.

The main concern isn't whether the cartel can replace Lybia's daily exports. It's whether the governments of Saudi Arabia and Iran and will change in the wave of pro-reform uprisings that already have ousted leaders in Egypt and Tunisia. Raising production now "would have a minor calming effect on the market," Lynch said. "Other than that, it's not going to take us back below $100" per barrel.

In other Nymex trading for April contracts, heating oil lost 5.66 cents at $3.0091 per gallon and gasoline futures gave up 5.62 cents at $2.9477 per gallon. Natural gas lost less than a penny to $3.915 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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Economy
Oil prices retreated Tuesday as OPEC ministers discussed whether to ramp up oil production in the wake of the Libyan uprising.Meanwhile, gasoline pump prices in the U.S. climbed for the 21ststraight day, adding nearly a penny on Tuesday at $3.517 per gallon. Agallon of...
Oil Prices
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2011-45-08
Tuesday, 08 Mar 2011 10:45 AM
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