Will oil hit $80 tonight?

This was released one hour ago:
The price of New York crude steadied near to its all-time high of almost 79 dollars a barrel Wednesday ahead of key data on US inventories and after the OPEC cartel decided to hike its daily oil output.

New York's main futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in October dipped four cents to 78.19 dollars per barrel.

On Tuesday it struck a record close of 78.23 dollars. New York crude's intra-day high is 78.77 dollars, which was reached on August 1.

In London on Wednesday, the price of Brent North Sea crude for October delivery edged down one cent to 76.37 dollars per barrel.

The market was awaiting the latest weekly inventory report from the US Energy Information Administration, due at 1430 GMT.

"The EIA data will assume a new significance in the wake of the (OPEC) announcement with further falls in crude stocks a trigger for further (price) gains," said Bank of Ireland analyst Paul Harris.
It's 11.56pm here in Newcastle, Australia. I obviously won't be up to welcome the new EIA report but I suspect that it's not going to be good. The market has already placed the price of oil at less than $1 away from its all time high and I'm reasonably confident that the EIA will show increasing supply problems - a situation that will result in the oil price going up past US$80 for the first time.

For those of you who are not certain what this means (apart from higher prices to fill your car), I suggest you read my 2005 prediction about the current "perfect storm" that is now gripping America. Basically it comes down to this formula:
(High oil prices due to Peak Oil) +
(Meltdown in the housing market due to investment bubble popping) +
(Large current account deficit leading to drop in value of the US Dollar) +
(Large US government budget deficits) =
Perfect economic storm.

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