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Report: Oil to reach $80-$90 by early 2010

OPEC’s secretary general told Reuters today that the price of oil could hit $80 to $90 a barrel by early next year. At the same time, Abdullah al-Badri also said OPEC was not ready to formally increase its output ceiling.

As of noon today, West Texas crude was going for $68.25 per barrel.

In a separate story, Baldri told Reuters that more balance was needed between the amount of oil traded in the physical markets and the “paper” markets. OPEC has blamed that imbalance for driving oil prices to a record-high $147 a barrel last year.