Experts Say Oil Prices Rising Due to Expensive Barrels
Houston, TX - May 10th - Maxwell Terrenbeck, Associate Systems Director for OPEC, said Saturday that the recent climb in oil prices has been the result, at least in part, to the climbing expenses of producing and maintaining the barrels that hold the oil.
"Oil is contained in 55-gallon steel drums after it is processed. Millions of these containers are needed to store the world's oil. Production costs for these containers, which involves the manufacturing of steel, transport, factory operations, among other things, has been on the rise for some time," said Terrenbeck.
Terrenbeck would not comment on just how much it costs these days to make the barrels.
There has been some speculation that the price of barrel production has equaled the price of the barrel of oil itself. Though experts at ExxonMobile did not offer statistics, they say the cost ratio of oil/barrel product is not an issue for business.
Still, analysts, such as Barrett Nickerson of the American Society of Statics, say their data suggests that a serious crisis looms over the cost of barrel vs. oil production. "It could put a continuing strain on the economy," he said. "For example, I don't see the possibility of oil prices falling below $100/barrel anytime soon."
If oil prices were to start falling again, Nickerson added, the sustained cost in barrel production would create a lag in the change. "The domino effect would take a while to even out."
Bear Sterns Lays Off More People Than It Employs
New York - May 29 - Bear Stearns CEO Alan Schwartz refused to comment on allegations that a May 23rd PR memo approved the layoff of more people than the company actually employs, according to a statement by the Non-Associated Press.
The latest round of layoffs for the company, not yet announced to the media, was to include the firing of 14,444 employees. The company employs about 14,000. It is unclear whether the glitch, thought to be an error by PR Assistant Sierra Bandikar, would delay any pending layoffs.
"I am so, so sorry," said Bandikar, "This is so tough. I laminated my resume 3 times, went on 7 interviews, and I type up every note with perfection, fax everything flawlessly, and make my boss' coffee just the way she likes it."
Stanley Porter, an Information Technology Associate, said, "Times are hard enough. Those folks up in PR should show us just a little decency. I'm just hoping this gives the company time to change their minds, but I don't think so."
Bear Stearns representatives would not say if and when it would resume additional downsizing.