Thursday, August 17, 2006

Oil prices drop; Enjoy it while it lasts

Oil prices dropped again today.

Oil fell sharply on Thursday to its lowest price in nearly two months after ample U.S. fuel stockpiles eased investor fears of supply shortages as the U.S. summer driving season drawing to a close.

Although prices have fallen for four consecutive sessions, the market is still up 14 percent this year on healthy global demand, geopolitical tensions and supply disruptions in key oil-producing countries.

U.S. light, sweet crude for September delivery dropped $1.19 to $70.70 a barrel by 1510 GMT, its lowest since June 26. London Brent fell $1.04 to $71.79 a barrel.

U.S. crude prices have tumbled more than seven percent, declining in six of the last eight sessions, as a ceasefire took hold in the Middle East and BP decided to shut in only half of its 400,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) Prudhoe Bay oilfield for pipeline repairs.

I give this downward trend about one more day. Then we'll see it shoot back up after Iran tells the UN Security Council to take its resolution and stick it in its collective bum. Almost immediately after that, the market will start freaking out about winter heating oil supplies, particualarly if some university genius predicts a cold winter.

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