Oil prices repeatedly hitting new records is leading to concerns about the effects on the cost of other daily items – everything from bread to fish.
It is also sparked a rush to the bookies in Britain by people placing bets that the price will hit 100 dollars a barrel soon.
Professional investors – that is market speculators -are also betting, which should help push oil prices up to the 100 dollar mark and keep trade volatile over the next few weeks.
Crude oil in the US this week hit a record of over 96 dollars. But it is not the only commodity going up; the weakness of the dollar, coupled with demand from booming economies like China, is causing a rise in metals such as copper – used to make water pipes and electricity cables – and even wheat prices have gone up 180% since the middle of 2006.
Higher fuel prices hit producers, like fishermen in northern France, who have gone on strike in protest. Trawler owner Dominique Faou said: “Right now, at these prices, it’s not even worth going to sea. On the bigger boats, more than 30% of what we make goes on fuel.”
Nearly all the 300 boats based in Guilvinec refused to put to sea demanding that the French government lower taxes that make up 80% of the cost of their fuel.