Oil above $108 breaks 30-month high

Oil pricesClick chart for oil and other commodity prices. By Annalyn Censky, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Oil prices breached a 30-month high Monday, as investors continued to cheer a better-than-expected report on the U.S. job market.

Investors welcomed Friday's jobs report as a positive sign that demand for fuel could pick up, as the economic recovery pushes forward.

Crude oil for May delivery fell 53 cents, or 0.5%, to settle at $108.47 a barrel Monday -- its highest close since September 2008. The contract traded as high as $108.78 earlier in the session.

Brent crude, Europe's benchmark, rose $2.30, or 1.9%, to $121 a barrel.

Oil has been on a rally since mid-February, when protests broke out in Libya -- Africa's third-largest oil producer. Investors have been concerned that uprisings in the Middle East could spread to even larger oil producers, like Saudi Arabia, and limit supply coming from the region.

Over the weekend, Nigerian officials announced they will push parliamentary elections back a week, following violent uprisings in the country. Nigeria is Africa's largest oil producer.

Analysts estimate turmoil in North Africa and the Middle East is adding a $15 to $20 risk premium to oil prices.

"The real price of oil is probably somewhere around $90," said John Canally, investment strategist at LPL Financial. "But with Libya, now Nigeria, and just general unrest, traders are nervous about supply disruptions -- so oil stays high."

Meanwhile, the earthquake and tsunami in Japan have since kept on investors even more on edge.

As the world's third-largest economy recovers from the disaster and subsequent nuclear crisis, some analysts predict Japan will increase its demand for oil, sending crude prices even higher.

Despite all the turmoil, money managers surveyed by CNNMoney expect oil prices to ease from their recent highs, and average out to $97 a barrel by year's end.

Meanwhile, the national average price for a gallon of regular gas rose to $3.662 Monday, up 1.7 cents from the day before, according to a daily survey from motorist group AAA. Gas prices have risen for 13 days in a row and are now about 45 cents shy of the record $4.114 reached in July 2008. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.30%4.25%
15 yr fixed3.29%3.32%
5/1 ARM3.45%3.63%
30 yr refi4.27%4.20%
15 yr refi3.26%3.24%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 17,113.54 0.00 0.00%
Nasdaq 4,456.02 31.32 0.71%
S&P 500 1,983.53 9.90 0.50%
Treasuries 2.47 -0.01 -0.32%
Data as of 11:56pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 15.52 0.00 0.00%
Apple Inc 94.72 0.78 0.83%
Microsoft Corp 44.83 -0.00 -0.01%
Intel Corp 34.79 0.73 2.14%
Facebook Inc 69.27 -0.13 -0.19%
Data as of 4:03pm ET

Sections

Passion fruit, Mexican cinnamon and Ecuadorian cocoa. From coast to coast, entrepreneurs are brewing craft beers that incorporate Latin flavors. More

One recently retired airline worker on Obamacare said his tax credit for 2014 will return him $3,600 for the year, or 23% of his annual income. He's watching the dueling court rulings closely. More

Ladar Levison, the guy behind Lavabit, is launching Dark Mail to encrypt emails so the NSA doesn't even know who's talking. More

Passion fruit, Mexican cinnamon and Ecuadorian cocoa. From coast to coast, entrepreneurs are brewing craft beers that incorporate Latin flavors. More

Court documents show big support from Detroit employees and retirees for a turnaround plan that should help the city emerge quickly from bankruptcy. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.