Hillary Clinton throws economists off the bustbn0.google.com
Added 2179 days ago in Business
salon.com — Hillary Clinton told Stephanopoulos that her support for a gas tax holiday is based on her conviction that the price of oil is a result of oil market manipulation.

Now, why am I proposing this? Well, No. 1, I am absolutely convinced that these record profits of the oil companies are a result of a number of factors beyond supply and demand. I think there has been market manipulation. In fact, Exxon Mobil official testifying under oath before the House of Representatives committee said that if it were just market factors, then the price of oil would be like $50 or $55 a barrel.

We know that there's market manipulation going on. So I would launch an investigation if I were president right now by the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission.

The question is: Who is doing the manipulation? What the man from Exxon-Mobil was likely referring to is the impact of speculation by hedge funds and other institutional traders upon the price of oil. No one knows how much of the current price is due to traders bidding up the price - estimates ranges from 20 percent all the way up to 60 percent. We don't know because a huge percentage of energy trading is done on unregulated electronic exchanges who don't have to report big market moves to the government - because of a law, signed by Hillary Clinton's husband, that exempted those exchanges from close government scrutiny. If Clinton really wants to start cracking down on oil market manipulation, the first place to start is in regulating energy futures trading to the point that the government actually knows what's going on. In the long run, that would be far more meaningful than a gas tax holiday or even a windfall profits tax.

Posted by JoshMadison
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Do you believe that the vast majority of price increase in the barrel of oil is due to speculative market manipulation by energy traders?
Yes, Market Manipulation
90%
No, Demand / Supply issue
9.6%
This is not a scientific survey, click here to learn more. Results may not total 100% due to rounding and voting descrepencies.
User Comments
Posted 2179 days ago
0 up votes, 0 down votes
Without speculator involvement through the NYSE, the price for a barrel of oil would decrease. However, there are other elements to sort out this problem- (1) OPEC (2) Production limits (3) US not investing in new refineries (4) Summer vs. Winter requirement and the change-over to mark same (5) Taxes levys from both state and federal that are set-aside for highway improvement, etc., etc., and the list goes on.
Posted 2179 days ago
0 up votes, 0 down votes
Well, sometimes it is the strong dollar, then the weak dollar. Or OPEC or a storm in the Carribean or an explosion in Nigeria or whatever....

Oil companies always have a good arguement for rising prices and the strongest rises always happen around holidays or at teh end of the school term. Go figure.
Posted 2177 days ago
0 up votes, 0 down votes
Don't expect any new law or regulation for this problem, that's called capitalism.
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