No Surprise: Oil Broke $100

Everybody saw it happen and a few people saw it coming. Oil futures briefly broke $100 yesterday, and the implications are running wild. The main catalyst for the move falls on quantitative easing round three, pushed through by the Federal Reserve Thursday. The Europe bailout fund also put some momentum into demand. We won’t touch the politics.

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The International Energy Agency’s (IEA) chief economist, Fatih Birol, said, “I see the prices today, in this economic context, as unbearable for consumers. High prices together with other factors could push the global economy back into recession.” Brent crude had a high today of $117.95.

WTI crude oil prices have come down about a dollar since the mid-afternoon high. Dan Flynn, an analyst at Price Futures Group, said, “The market is exhausted after rising so much, and the IEA economist worrying about high oil prices probably helped pull prices back some.”

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