Sen. Sanders: Blame Speculators for High Gas Prices

Excessive speculation in the oils futures market is to blame for higher gas prices, not supply and demand, Senator Bernie Sanders told Cramer Wednesday.

Sanders, an independent senator from Vermont, said that speculation is something special interests on Wall Street don’t want consumers to know anything about.

“These are some of the most powerful people in the world. They make huge amounts of campaign contributions. They have lobbyists running around all over this place,” he said. “What they do not want is the American people to understand that the price that they’re paying at the gas pump is artificially inflated because of the excessive speculation.”

While West Texas crude has come down to about $79 a barrel, the price of Brent crude is still above $100. Brent is what the refiners use to determine the price you pay at the pump.

Sanders thinks those powerful interests on Wall Street are the reason that the Commodities Futures Trading Commission has yet to enforce the provision in the Dodd-Frank law that requires the CFTC to diminish oil speculation by the end of the year.

The bottom line, he said, is that oil is an important commodity for our economy and we can’t see it at an artificially high price.

“People think that this has something to do with supply and demand,” he said, “but the reality is today there is more supply of oil today than there was two years ago. There is less demand. Oil prices should have gone down.”

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