Energy Dept. boosts outlook for oil and gas prices

AP News
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Posted: Mar 08, 2011 12:46 PM
Energy Dept. boosts outlook for oil and gas prices

The U.S. Department of Energy says pump prices this spring and summer will average $3.70 with a barrel of oil averaging $102.

Conflict in the Middle East and fighting in Libya prompted government analysts to raise expectations for gasoline prices by 50 cents a gallon in its monthly Short-Term Energy Outlook released Tuesday. The Energy Department boosted its per-barrel oil estimate by $9 for the peak driving season.

The report says there is "significant uncertainty surrounding the forecast" and pump prices could spike above $4 this summer, which would threaten the all-time highs reached at the beginning of the recession three years ago.