What's driving $78 oil

Is all that liquidity sloshing around the world responsible for the recent run-up in oil?  The New York Post has looked around and found no other plausible explanation:

Wall Street's smart money is running after oil for its new riches, driving up prices to new records that could push crude past a stunning $100 a barrel in coming months.

Energy analysts say many investors – burned by the junk mortgage meltdown – are suddenly bullish about crude oil. Yet they say there are no fundamental reasons for driving up prices…

Wall Street speculators have been blamed for adding the last $10 rise in a barrel of crude and are likely to push it higher as drillers confront more difficulties and expenses in locating new oil sources.

"There is one clear factor and that is funds that entered the market three weeks ago," said Mark Routt of Energy Security Analysis Inc. "It continues to flow in."

Crude has backtracked a bit as we approach week's end.  The Post's hypothesis is as valid as anything else, short term.  But I detect a hint of subconscious Peak Oil denial is at work here, too.

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