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Did a rogue trader affect the price of oil?

As we covered yesterday, a rogue trader who created a $10 million loss for his employer has been reported to the regulatory authorities and suspended from his position. However, as further details of the various positions come to light many people are very concerned that the trading activity of one dealer apparently added around two dollars to the price of a barrel of oil which peaked at $73 yesterday.

When you also take into account the fact that oil has, and continues to have, a significant impact on the worldwide economy this is potentially a very difficult and damaging situation. Despite tight regulation in the commodities market it appears that potentially some markets are still open to abuse which can have a significant knock-on effect to the worldwide economy. There is no doubt that as the price of oil touched $73 yesterday a number of investors followed suit in the expectation that the price would push higher and they would crystallise a profit.

A recent report into the worldwide energy market indicated there was no increase in the underlying demand for oil around the world and investors stand accused of pushing the price higher due to a significant number of speculative trades.

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