Oil prices rocketed up more than $25 a barrel today, recording the biggest one-day price jump ever as anxiety over the government's $700 billion bailout plan, a weak dollar, and an expiring crude contract ignited a dramatic rally. Light, sweet crude for October delivery jumped as much as $25.45 to $130 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange before falling back to settle at $120.92, up $16.37, the AP reports.
The contract expired at the end of the day, adding to the volatility as traders rushed to cover positions. The October price began accelerating sharply in the last hour of regular trading, a common occurrence when a contract is about to go off the board. Crude has gained about $30 in a dramatic 4-day rally and is now within striking distance of its all-time record of $147.27, reached in July.