Oil prices hit eight-month lows last week after Spain’s bailout plan failed to ease concerns of the euro region’s debt crisis. Prices for crude oil for July delivery fell to $82.70, their lowest levels since Oct. 6. There’s skepticism about the plan for the bailout. The euphoria was short-lived as attentions shifted to Italy and even France.”
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s recent comments gave no hint of stimulus from the central bank to help boost the economy. Bernanke stated that the Federal Reserve was ready to take action if Europe’s problems began to threaten the U.S. economy, but gave no hint that any additional measures were coming in the near future.
When it last met in December, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) agreed to pump 30 million barrels per day (bpd) but the target was never adhered to and production has risen to almost 32 million bpd, a four-year high, despite sanctions against Iranian crude exports.