Randolph and Mortimer have moved on from FCOJ.
January 13, 2009 1:05 PM Subscribe
posted by elizardbits (29 comments total)
6 users marked this as a favorite
Was market speculation behind this year's rise in crude oil prices? Earlier this year, prices topped $100/bbl, the highest seen since the oil crisis of the late 70s/early 80s
. By July 2008, the price of crude oil reached a record high of $144/bbl
, costing US consumers between $4-$5 per gallon at the pump.
Throughout 2008, economists were quick to name various possible causes: increased demand due to rapid development in China and India
, mitigated by short supply
and production shortfalls
; unrest in various oil-producing nations
; the ominous shadow of peak oil
; and finally, crude oil speculation
After months of rising nationwide consumer outrage, the Oil Speculation Reduction Act of 2008
was introduced in the House of Representatives in late June 2008. In response to the proposed bill, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)
released a 48-page report
stating their belief that "observed increases in the speculative activity and the number of traders in the crude oil futures market do not appear to have systematically affected prices"; the report was met with some skepticism
Now that crude oil has dropped to a four-year low of $33/bbl
, economists are faced with the task of
finding someone to blame
explaining the Great Oilpocalypse of 2008. A recent 60 Minutes report
suggests that market speculation, and only
market speculation - by hedge funds and big-name Wall Street investment banks - is responsible, going so far as to invoke the corporation we all love to hate, Enron.