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Oil will fall to $20 a barrel, then stay around $35, hedge fund manager bets

The steep drop in U.S. demand for oil will drive world prices to the low double digits, Swiss hedge fund manager and commodities speculator Jacques Mechelany tells Reuters.

Oil prices topped $150 a barrel last summer, but they're headed much lower -- to around $20, then to a "long-term equilibrium" of around $35, argues hedge-fund manager Jacques Mechelany of Bank of China (Suisse). That probably means gasoline will stay in the $1-and-change, good for consumers and business users, while frustrating solar and alternative-power investors.

"Crude oil prices could fall as low as $20 a barrel in 2009 as falling U.S. demand outstrips Chinese growth," Mechelany told the Reuters news service, via the Guardian newspaper, in this story.