Crude oil's march to the $100 barrel

    Queen's School of Business expert available to comment

    KINGSTON, ON, Jan. 2 /CNW/ - If gasoline prices have you banging your
head against the steering wheel, strap on a helmet because it's about to get
worse: the $100 barrel of crude oil made a fleeting appearance today.
    What's behind these prices? And will they last?
    According to Dr. David Detomasi, a professor of international business at
Queen's School of Business, the spectacular rise in oil prices has everything
to do with speculation and little to do with market fundamentals.

    Dr. Detomasi argues that:

    -   The current price spike is due to speculation. The onset of the
        winter heating season, geopolitical concerns in areas such as
        Venezuela and Iran, utterances by OPEC and some lower inventories
        south of the border are to blame.
    -   It's a bubble, and the question is not if - but when - the air will
        be let out of the balloon. The price should ease somewhat over the
        coming year; levelling off in the $60-$70 dollar range says Detomasi.
    -   The $100 barrel is about psychology, not geology. $100 a barrel isn't
        significantly different from the mid-$90s we have faced in the last
        few months, but it makes for great headlines. It's not the price that
        we should be focused on, says Detomasi, it's the overall trend.

    A compelling and thoughtful speaker, David Detomasi is available for
    Possible questions include:

    -   How much of this spike is due to the fear of diminishing supplies?
    -   Will reaching the record-breaking $100 mark have an impact on
        consumption behaviour?

For further information:

For further information: To arrange an interview, please contact: Amy
Davidson or Josh Cobden, Environics Communications, (416) 920-9000, ext. 2830
or 2746

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