A worker fuels a car in front of a dragon decoration at a gas station January 14, 2007 in Beijing, China.
Credit: China Photos

Oil prices have been on the rise for the past several weeks.

Why? There are plenty of reasons.

The US economy has been showing some signs of strength: consumers are spending more, the unemployment picture is improving somewhat, and the manufacturing sector has also been a bit stronger.

Meanwhile, major oil producers Iran and Nigeria have both had their share of political instability issues lately. 

And hanging above all of this uncertainty is a fundamental economic fact: a thirsty China needs more oil. Always.

The market today was also unnerved by changes in a key oil pipeline in the Midwest, Businessweek reports

The price of crude jumped over $100 per barrel for the first time in about four months and as USA Today reports, those prices are up 26 percent since the end of September.

But as our friends at Next Media Animation have figured out, sometimes explanations of complex economic trends work best when set to a mean backbeat.


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