The price of crude oil hit a record high Tuesday. U.S. crude oil futures touched the record price of $71 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange in afternoon trading. The price later eased downward slightly.
Analysts blame the price hikes on concerns that disputes over Iran's nuclear program and political tensions in other key suppliers could crimp deliveries at a time of strong demand and little spare production capacity.
The record oil prices are pushing gasoline prices toward record levels.
President Bush said Tuesday that the U.S. government will watch gasoline prices closely and investigate any "price gouging."
Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.