With overseas chaos and the war in Libya, oil prices are increasingly higher as investors and speculators anticipate a government report on U.S. petroleum demand to be released this week.
Wednesday morning began as benchmark crude added 73 cents at $105.70 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Meanwhile, after a drastic rise recently in oil and gasoline prices, many economists are looking for signs that Americans are pushing back with lower consumption. A decrease in consumption would suggest that motorists are starting to drive less as the peak driving season rapidly approaches.
At this time, it’s unclear how exactly consumers are reacting.
A report released on Tuesday by SpendingPulse revealed that drivers had cut back on fuel purchases as of last week, but the petroleum industry later reported that U.S. gasoline supplies dropped more than expected due to circumstances in the Middle East.
Meanwhile, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) has announced it will release its numbers on oil and gasoline supplies late Wednesday. To date, average gas pump prices nationwide have held steady at $3.55 per gallon on Wednesday.
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