In Congress, hunt is on for oil-price culprits

06/26/2008 | NYTimes.com

Congress has held 40 hearings this year on the soaring cost of oil while bills with clever names -- Prevent Unfair Manipulation of Prices Act, or PUMP -- multiply. Lawmakers are increasingly casting blame on the role of market speculators, but some experts say speculators have become the scapegoat for deeper-seated problems. Congress wants to take action "but there is not much it can do to promote peace in Nigeria or to get the value of the dollar to go up," says energy consultant Daniel Yergin.

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