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Did speculation drive oil prices? market fundamentals suggest otherwise

Michael Plante () and Mine Yucel

Economic Letter, 2011, vol. 6, issue oct, No 11

Abstract: Oil market speculation became an especially popular topic when the price of crude tripled over 18 months to a record high $145 per barrel in July 2008. Of particular interest to many is whether speculators drove oil prices beyond what fundamentals would have otherwise justified. We explore this issue over two Economic Letters. In this article, we look at evidence from the physical market for oil and conclude that fundamentals, and not speculation, were behind the dramatic rise and fall in oil prices. In our companion Economic Letter, we examine the futures market.

Keywords: Supply and demand; Inventories (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2011
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