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It seems the great speculative Oil Bubble has burst, lets see how long they can justify keeping the per gallon gas price artificially inflated.

Oil prices slide beneath $114

Crude prices continued their dizzying spiral down on Friday, shedding nearly four dollars to trade below 114 dollars a barrel as the US currency strengthened amid concerns about energy demand, dealers said.

Brent North Sea crude for September delivery hit an intra-day low of 113.55 dollars a barrel. It recovered slightly to stand at 114.06 dollars, down 3.80 dollars, at about 1420 GMT

New York's main contract, light sweet crude for September stood at 116.28 dollars a barrel, down 3.74.

Oil futures have shed more than 20 percent in value since hitting record highs above 147 dollars per barrel on July 11.

Oil prices are "getting more and more pressure from dollar strength and it doesn't seem reversible for now," said Serge Laureau, commodities strategist at Saxo Bank in Copenhagen, quoted by Dow Jones Newswires.

The dollar struck a five-month high point against the euro on Friday on fading prospects of an interest rate rise by the European Central Bank, dealers said.

A strong dollar makes goods priced in the US unit more expensive for holders of weaker currencies.

In a move that sparked hope of an increase in oil supplies in the future, Iraq said it was resuming exploration activities after a break of nearly 20 years owing to crippling UN sanctions.

Iraq said it hoped to double its proven reserves of crude, adding that it wanted to ramp up output by 500,000 barrels per day from the current average production of 2.5 million bpd, about equal to the amount being pumped before the US-led invasion of March 2003.

Exports of 2.11 million bpd currently form the bulk of the war-torn nation's revenues, and the oil ministry is keen to raise capacity over the next five years to 4.5 million bpd.

World oil prices had on Thursday risen towards 120 dollars a barrel on news that a pipeline carrying crude from Central Asia to the West would remain shut for about 15 days after a recent explosion.

On Friday, separatist Kurdish rebels claimed responsibility for Tuesday's blast on the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline in eastern Turkey which is expected to leave the pipeline shut for two more weeks.

Despite modest price gains on Thursday, the oil market has dived lower this week on mounting concern that slower economic growth in the United States would translate into lower global energy demand.

On Monday, prices slumped under 120 dollars a barrel in New York and London for the first time in three months, as a tropical storm looked set to miss energy installations in the Gulf of Mexico.

The US government meanwhile reported US consumer spending, which fuels two-thirds of output, had cooled in June and inflationary pressures accelerated.

Prices extended their slide on Tuesday as signs of a slowing global economy raised further doubts about demand.

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I know right, but that is almost to be expected, but I have heard that the decrease should continue through September, likely approaching the $100.00 dollar per barrel mark. We should begin to really see it at this point.

Man, I hope you are right. I've been doing some serious campaigning here at work to allow us to work from home. Looks like it's starting to pay off.

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It seems the great speculative Oil Bubble has burst, lets see how long they can justify keeping the per gallon gas price artificially inflated.

Oil prices slide beneath $114

Why mention speculative when the article you posted, as well as most others, point to the strengthening dollar and decreased demand.

Speculation played such a little role in oil's increase, and such a little role in it's decrease.

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Why mention speculative when the article you posted, as well as most others, point to the strengthening dollar and decreased demand.

Speculation played such a little role in oil's increase, and such a little role in it's decrease.

That line should be the end of the discussion of this recent tumble in oil prices.

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