Oil climbs above $99; gasoline at avg. $3.86

Associated Press Modified: September 17, 2012 at 9:46 am •  Published: September 17, 2012

NEW YORK (AP) — The price of oil is rising Monday, adding to a big gain last week after the U.S. Federal Reserve announced new steps to boost the U.S. economy.

Benchmark crude gained 44 cents to $99.44 in early trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Oil ended 2.7 percent higher last week.

The Fed's plan, which includes keeping interest rates at extraordinarily low rates into 2015, gives investors the incentive to put their money into riskier assets like commodities. But the higher oil rises, the more analysts believe consumers will pull back on spending.

While higher oil prices tend to drive up prices at the pump, the end of the summer driving season means demand should drop.

The national average for gasoline Monday is $3.862, down slightly from Friday.

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