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29 Sep, 2018 06:12

High oil prices make Americans question the Trump administration’s work – analyst to RT

Surging crude prices are causing rises in US gasoline prices. President Donald Trump can’t afford that before the upcoming US midterm elections, says Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates.
High oil prices make Americans question the Trump administration’s work – analyst to RT

“President Trump is worried that higher gas prices will impact consumer spending and that this would result in a slowdown of the USA economy. High energy prices are a concern for the administration going into the midterm elections,” Lipow told RT.

Higher gasoline prices is a pocketbook issue for consumers, they see gasoline prices rising and wonder what the government is doing about it to keep money with the consumer.

The average cost of gasoline in the US has risen 60 percent from $1.87 per gallon in February 2016 to almost $3 in September. This week, oil prices rose above $82 per barrel for the first time since 2014 as Iran is losing its crude exports ahead of Trump’s sanctions against it oil sector coming into force early November.

“The loss of Iranian oil sales, combined with declining Venezuelan production and skepticism that OPEC and non OPEC producers will be able to make up the difference has caused oil prices to rise with Brent now at $82 per barrel,” Lipow said.

With surging oil prices, US gas consumption is falling. The US Energy Information Administration predicts consumption will plunge by around 10,000 barrels per day this year. The national price average was at $2.867 a gallon as of Wednesday, its highest seasonally since 2014, said the American Automobile Association.

Trump has demanded that OPEC raise its output to offset the decline in Iranian supplies. To this, Iran replied crude wouldn’t have edged up without the US interference in the affairs of the Middle East. “If he wants the price of oil not to go up and the market not to get destabilized, he should stop unwarranted and disruptive interference in the Middle East and not be an obstacle to the production and export of Iran’s oil,” Tehran’s oil minister, Bijan Zanganeh, said this week.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT's business section