As World Economy Slows, Oil Prices Drop

Posted June 21st, 2012 at 3:50 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

With the world economy slowing, the price of oil on the New York market has dropped below $80 a barrel for the first time since October.

Oil has traded at well over $100 a barrel in the last year. But on Thursday the price for the West Texas Intermediate crude sold on the U.S. market dipped to near $78, down 21 percent since the start of 2012. Brent crude drilled in the North Sea and sold on the London market dropped below $90 a barrel, its lowest level since December 2010.

Analysts say prices are falling because there is not as much demand for oil at the moment, as the U.S. labor market weakens, Europe struggles to resolve its governmental debt crisis and manufacturing slows in China. When economies are expanding rapidly, the price of oil used to fuel more manufacturing and other business ventures usually increases.

Several months ago in the U.S., motorists faced the highest cost ever for gasoline for that time of the year. Many feared that prices would keep on climbing into the summer when American families often drive to vacation destinations.

But now, with the price of oil dropping, gasoline prices have fallen to an average of 91 cents a liter ($3.47 a gallon), down 12 cents from their peak in early April ($3.93 a gallon).