Thursday, February 21, 2008

Oil and Gasoline Prices Soar Higher

crude oil unleaded gasoline price february 2008The consequential role that oil and gas prices plays in the American economy was clearly evident this week. On Monday, an explosion at a refinery in Big Spring, Texas was cited as one of the reasons for a rapid increase of crude oil prices to a record high over $100 a barrel. Others factors include OPEC's production slowdown and Venezuelan President Chavez' threats to cut off oil sales to the US.

Even before the refinery explosion, regular unleaded gasoline prices had already started to increase. As of Tuesday, the average retail unleaded gas price was UP 8.2 cents from last week to $3.042 according to the US Department of Energy. This is up nearly 75 cents from last year at this time.

The volatility of foreign oil poses an economic and security risk to the United States. Higher oil and gasoline prices impact all aspects of the economy. And with many Americans already feeling the pain of a slowing economy, these higher prices will continue to cause economic pain and suffering.

Source: Energy Information Agency, Department of Energy

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