The Denver Post - - BUSINESS -

Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump blames OPEC for oil prices that he says are too high, and no doubt many Amer­i­cans feel the same way.

But it’s more com­pli­cated than that.

Crude has more than dou­bled since bot­tom­ing out be­low $30 a bar­rel in early 2016, caus­ing U.S. mo­torists to face the high­est ga­so­line prices since late 2014.

On Wed­nes­day, the na­tional av­er­age for a gal­lon of reg­u­lar stood at $2.91, up 25 per­cent from a year ago, ac­cord­ing to the AAA auto club.

“Oil prices are too high, OPEC is at it again. Not good!” Trump tweeted Wed­nes­day morn­ing.

OPEC is the Or­ga­ni­za­tion of Petroleum Ex­port­ing Coun­tries. Mem­bers of the car­tel, led by Saudi Ara­bia, and other big pro­duc­ers in­clud­ing Rus­sia have played a role in re­vers­ing the plunge in crude prices that started in 2014. They have shown dis­ci­pline in lim­it­ing pro­duc­tion since the start of last year, help­ing push up the bench­mark price of in­ter­na­tional crude.

Prices, how­ever, were al­ready ris­ing on growing de­mand and ex­pec­ta­tions that a sharp pull­back in new in­vest­ment by oil com­pa­nies would re­duce the oil sup­ply.

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