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Four dollars for gas – again

by Adam Russett on June 10, 2011

Americans may have been breathing a sigh of relief when the seemingly never-ending rise of gas prices finally eased up toward the end of May, but it turns out that those high numbers may have just been a false summit. New developments show that, at least in the short-term, there will be more pain at the pump ahead. 

Most of the coming spike will be due to disagreements among leaders at OPEC, the oil supply organization. The countries that are part of the group didn't reach an output deal for oil estimates, in part because previous data for oil demand was inaccurate – a new monthly report shows that the world will consume 30.7 million barrels of oil per day, rather than the 28.97 million originally predicted by OPEC in May. Political tensions and different statistics further divided the leaders.

These revised estimates show that oil could fall short by 1.73 million barrels per day for the rest of the year, which is enough to power the entire economy of France, according to Reuters.

"Looking to the remainder of this year, the expected supply/demand balance indicates a tightening market," the report read. "As a result, global inventories could continue to decline as the market enters a period of high seasonal demand."

While this could lead to higher gas prices in the near future, some analysts indicate that drivers may not have to start worrying just yet, because The International Energy Agency (IEA) may reach a different conclusion in its coming report, which will be released next week.

"It's absolutely market neutral," expert Olivier Jakob told Reuters. "What's going to matter more is the IEA report next week when we will be able to see if there are any more changes." 

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