On Tuesday, House Republican Whip Roy Blunt of Missouri issued a critical statement concerning the fact that the U.S. national average for a gallon of gasoline rose above $3.00 in November for the first time in history.
The jump in price is a 14-cent jump in just one week and the greatest week-jump since September of 2005.
Blunt also pointed out that some economists estimate that for every 25-cent spike in gas prices, the U.S. economy loses $100 million per day; and gasoline prices have gone up 70 cents since the Democrats won the majority in Congress.
Blunt said that with $100-a-barrel oil looming and driving up gas prices as well as causing the expectation of $2000-per-household average expenditures for heating fuel this winter, Americans want Congress to create an energy bill that will drive innovation and conservation and allow the United States to become more energy independent by tapping new oil reserves and developing more alternative energy sources and technology.
However, he claims, the energy bill that the Congressional majority is writing “in secret” will have the exact opposite effect from what the nation needs and desires.
“Democrats find themselves with a unique opportunity on their hands — a chance to lighten the financial load on millions of Americans who rely on gasoline to drive to work, oil to heat their homes, and natural gas as an essential feedstock in just about everything they use. Unfortunately…Democrats will be responsible for an enormous increase in price, and a momentous shift toward strengthening our dependence on foreign-controlled energy,” Blunt stated.
It comes as no surprise to market analysts, economists, and investors that the price of oil is reaching for record highs (in terms of “real dollars”), as the dollar’s value falls relative to the value of other major world currencies even as worldwide demand for oil is the highest it has ever been as more nations develop and prosper.
The price of oil has been pegged to the dollar for decades. Many economists and analysts have been predicting $100-per-barrel oil for a year or more.
Despite record-high profits due to record-high global demand and production, oil companies have been earning the slimmest profit margins per barrel in over a year.
Oil prices are affected by a number of considerations that the futures traders on the floor of the New York Mercantile Exchange try to exploit to their advantage of either profiting or preventing losses every business day.
On Tuesday, when oil futures hit a record-high $97.10 per barrel on the Exchange, the traders were concerned by reports that oil giants Conoco and British Petroleum were going to have to cut production and evacuate workers from the North Sea, where a storm that could generate 36-foot-high waves was expected to hit. In 2007, North Sea operations produced over 4.4 billion barrels of oil per day, which exceeded that of the nation with the third-largest oil reserves in the world-Iran.
Other factors that of late have been driving up the national price of oil include political unrest in oil producing nations Venezuela and Nigeria, speculation that the U.S. might have low inventories, and heightened tensions in Pakistan and the Middle East.
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