Efforts by Saudis, boost in dollar unable to help

http://www.azcentra l.com/news/ articles/ 2008/06/10/ 20080610oilprice s0610.html
ource=nletter- news#comments> Jun. 10, 2008 12:00 AM
Associated Press
NEW YORK – Oil prices dropped Monday on a stronger dollar and a call from
Saudi Arabia for a meeting to talk about prices it called unjustifiably
high, but gas prices kept marching higher, leaving the $4 mark in the
rearview mirror.

The dollar improved against the euro after Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson
said that he would not rule out intervention to stabilize the U.S. currency
. That provided some relief for oil, which is priced in dollars, after a
record run-up on Friday.

Saudi Arabia called for a meeting of oil-producing countries. A Saudi
minister said the kingdom will work with OPEC to “guarantee the availability
of oil supplies now and in the future.” He also said the current price of
is unjustified.

But gas just kept climbing. The national average price of a gallon of
regular rose 1.8 cents, to $4.023, according to AAA and the Oil Price
Information Service. The average passed $4 on Sunday, although many parts of
the country have paid that for weeks.

And if oil stays near $139 a barrel, the high it set last week, gas prices
will probably rise another dime in the coming days, said Tom Kloza,
publisher and chief oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service in
Wall, N.J.

“The numbers do have some catching up to do,” Kloza said. “There’s a bit of
a tape delay that happens with gasoline.”

An AAA spokesman said prices could rise an extra 2 to 3 cents.

Drivers have shown signs of cutting back as gas prices go ever higher, but
gas producers have little choice but to keep raising prices when the cost of
their most important raw material, crude oil, goes up.

At today’s prices, it costs nearly $91 to fill a Ford Explorer, up from $70
a year ago. A person who drives that Explorer 25 to 40 miles to and from
work, not to mention chauffeuring kids around, has to gas up twice a week at

Gas prices often peak around Memorial Day, then retreat over the course of
the summer. But this is far from a normal year. Oil prices have been
marching steadily higher since fall, and sudden drops of $10 or more in oil
prices have been followed by rapid rebounds and new heights.

Last week, oil prices rose nearly 14 percent in two days, trading as high as
$139.12 a barrel, after slumping more than $13 from a previous record high.


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