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Oil up at $108 as Americans grapple with dearer fuel

OIL rose above $108 per barrel yesterday, as the dollar weakened against other major currencies.

Benchmark crude for May delivery gained $1.03 to settle at $108.15 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Oil for June delivery rose 59 cents to settle at $108.28 per barrel. Oil moved higher in afternoon trading as the dollar declined. Crude, which is priced in dollars, tends to rise as the dollar falls and makes oil barrels cheaper for investors holding foreign currency.

PFGBest analyst Phil Flynn said refineries also may be making their final oil purchases for May, helping to support crude prices.

Petrol pump prices in the US have increased for the last 28 days, adding an average of 29 cents per gallon since March 22. That means Americans are now paying roughly $110m more per day for the same amount of fuel.

The sharp rise could be pressuring Americans to drive less and buy less gas, though economists say it's too early to conclude that's happening. People usually curb their driving as a last resort, according to surveys. (AP)

Irish Independent