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Biden released reserve oil but gas prices may still hit record highs this summer

Energy secretary: Biden ‘obsessed’ with lowering ‘outrageous’ gas prices

Numerous factors are pushing prices up, with regular gasoline hitting a record $4.67 a gallon Wednesday according to AAA’s survey.
Gas prices were already expected to breach the $4 a gallon mark for the first time since 2008, with or without shots fired in Eastern Europe or economic sanctions imposed on Russia.



That’s because there’s a number of reasons beside the disruption of Russian oil exports driving prices higher according to Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis for the OPIS, which tracks gas prices for AAA. And making predictions about where prices will go has proved difficult. Wednesday’s record is already higher than Kloza a few weeks ago expected prices would reach. As school let out and summer travel picks up, so will gasoline demand and price, he said.
“Anything goes from June 20 to Labor Day,” Kloza said.
Here’s what’s behind the record price surge:
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine
Russia is one of the largest oil exporters on the planet. In December it sent nearly 8 million barrels of oil and other petroleum products to global markets, 5 million of them as crude oil.
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Very little of that went to the United States. In 2021 Europe got 60% of the oil and 20% went to China. But oil is priced on global commodity markets, so the loss of Russian oil affects prices around the globe no matter where it is used.
The concerns about disrupting global markets led Western nations to initially exempt Russian oil and natural gas from the sanctions they put in place to protest the invasion.
But in March the United States announced a formal ban on all Russian energy imports. And Monday the EU announced a ban on imports of Russian oil by ship, which represented about two-thirds of the oil European nations imported from Russia. Russia’s oil is slowly and steadily being removed from global markets.
China lockdowns ending
One factor keeping oil prices somewhat in check has been the surge of Covid cases, and strict lockdown rules in much of the country. That was a major drag on demand for oil.
But as the Covid surge has started to retreat, the lockdowns are being lifted in major cities such as Shanghai. And more demand with

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