Oil rises jump almost $7, closing in on record (Fear not Americans, ANWR is still off-limits)

Many investors tend to buy (oil) commodities as a hedge against inflation when the dollar is falling.

Also, a weaker dollar makes oil less expensive to investors dealing in other currencies. Analysts believe the dollarís protracted decline has been a major reason why oil prices have nearly doubled in the past year.

The euro strengthened further against the greenback Friday. A Labor Department report showing the U.S. unemployment rate jumped half a percentage point to 5.5 percent last month ó its biggest monthly increase since 1986 ó could drag the greenback even lower in the days ahead.

NEW YORK - Oil prices shot up nearly $7 a barrel Friday, extending big gains from the previous day and racing toward an all-time high after a Morgan Stanley analyst predicted prices could hit $150 by the Fourth of July.
A further weakening of the dollar helped keep prices high by enticing overseas buyers armed with stronger currencies and other investors looking for a hedge against the greenback. Light, sweet crude for July delivery jumped as much as $6.96 to

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12400801/$134.75 on the New York Mercantile Exchange, before easing slightly to trade at $134.40, up $6.61.