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The Editors

Scapegoating Oil Speculators Won’t Ease Pain at the Pump

No one, least of all President Barack Obama, should expect oil or gasoline prices to fall because of the five-point plan he unveiled at the White House yesterday.

Obama is about higher energy costs -- they can act as a drag on economic growth, and many people blame the chief executive when prices at the pump approach $4 a gallon. His proposal calls for adding staff at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to monitor oil markets, spending more on information technology to track trading, stiffer penalties for manipulators, limits on the size of the bets speculators can make, and increased disclosure by the CFTC of trading data.