Buoyed by reports of encouraging economic data oil futures came within 16 cents of the psychologically important benchmark of $100 a barrel. But, last night news that demand may remain weak and that supplies had risen the number fell below $99. None-the-less gasoline prices remained at record highs for this time of the year. The average price of regular across the nation was at $3.411 last night...the highest it has ever been this time of the year was $3.111 in 2007. U.S. consumers will pay $489.7 billion on gasoline this year..more than $100 billion above what they paid in 2010. Despite reduced demand, refineries are selling more overseas where they can get higher prices which is keeping U.S. prices high. High oil producer Libya
still remains off line.