Prices for light, sweet crude topped out at a new intraday
high of $64.27 in trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Tuesday, Aug.
Later in the day, however, prices settled back down before
closing at $63.07 per barrel.
Diesel prices, meanwhile, continued their upward climb
toward the $3 mark. ProMiles showed an average in California of $2.99 per
gallon on Wednesday, Aug. 10, while the U.S. average came in at $2.463 per
The prices didn’t stop there, however. The Tower Mart in
Redding, CA, had diesel going for $3.09 per gallon on Aug. 10, while
ModestoGasPrices.com showed a high of $3.15 per gallon in Modesto, CA.
But the high prices have only slightly slowed demand; a
fact, which analysts say, is making investors nervous, according to news
A series of refinery outages in the U.S. in recent weeks,
coupled with unease in Saudi Arabia and continued strong demand from China,
have all contributed to the increase in prices.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Energy released its 2005
world oil demand growth forecast, predicting less growth in demand by the end
of the year. The report said that demand would grow by 1.7 million barrels a
day this year to 84.2 million barrels per day. That’s a slight drop-off
compared to the 2.2 million in growth the department forecast in July.