Oil hits record 100.10 dollars

NEW YORK, Feb 19, 2008 (AFP) – The price of oil in New York spiked to a record 100.10 dollars a barrel Tuesday on supply concerns. The price for a barrel of light, sweet crude, eclipsed the record set in January of 100.09 dollars a barrel.

The market rallied amid speculation that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, which supplies about 40 percent of the world’s oil, would cut output at its March 5 meeting in Vienna, analysts said.

Another factor was the ongoing row between Venezuela and ExxonMobil over nationalized assets of the US giant.

“Oil futures surged higher amid technical buying underpinned by the ongoing saga between Venezuela and Exxon and on speculation surrounding OPEC’s next move when they meet in March,” said Sucden analyst Nimit Khamar.

“There is clear evidence that speculators are coming back in to the oil market.”

Iran has declined to rule out that OPEC would cut production next month.

“Over the last week we have seen numerous suggestions from OPEC members that they will either keep output steady or cut during the next meeting,” said Sucden’s Khamar.