The Spillover Effect of $100 Oil

Rising oil itself can't cause a recession, but it affects the price of virtually everything consumers purchase

U.S. consumers are hurting. Amid the housing crisis, a weakening job market, and spiraling inflation, consumers are facing the toughest economic climate in more than 15 years. With crude oil prices hitting the once-unthinkable $100 milestone on Jan. 2 and now hovering in the mid-$90s, overall conditions aren't likely to be helped by a modest easing in crude prices.

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