Oil falls on stronger dollar

2011-05-20 17:45

New York - Oil is falling as the dollar strengthens and gas pump prices continue to drop.

Benchmark crude for June delivery gave up 69 cents at $97.75 per barrel on Friday morning, the final day for the June contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Most of the trading has shifted to the July contract, which lost 71 cents $98.22 per barrel.

Analysts say they're increasingly concerned that high gas pump prices are forcing Americans to drive less, sapping demand in the world's biggest oil-consuming country. Government and industry data show that gasoline demand in the US has slipped for the past two months.

Pump prices started falling two weeks ago. They gave up another 2 cents on Friday, falling to a national average of $3.886 per gallon (less than a dollar a liter).