Sunday, June 22, 2008

Why blogs rule - Krugman on oil speculation

An example of why blogs rule. Krugman, responding to comments, makes a side comment on recent congressional testimony on oil speculation:
Calvo on commodities - Paul Krugman - Op-Ed Columnist - New York Times Blog

...Some correspondents have asked me what I think about the Congressional testimony of Michael Masters, who told a Senate subcommittee that “index speculators” — institutions that buy commodity futures as an investment — are responsible for the price surge.

The short answer is that I think his testimony is just stupid...
Topical, yes. Direct, rather. Informed, definitely. It's like a vastly smarter, faster version of radio commentary, but it's on demand, linkable, searchable and readable.

I love this stuff.

Oh, and oil speculation? I think it's a dumb term. I wish commentators would divide "speculative" pricing into psychological (futures contracts driven largely by uninformed human psychology) and fundamental (futures contracts based on expectations that demand for "light sweet crude" will exceed supply).

In August I will deliver my eagerly awaited judgment on the contribution of fundamental vs. psychological price projection to oil and gas prices.

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