Oil prices climb to record above $142 a barrel

Oil prices climbed to a record above $142 a barrel Friday as the US dollar's protracted slump and falling stock markets prompted investors to take refuge in oil. Prices were coming off a lift Thursday from comments by OPEC's president that crude prices could rise well above $150 a barrel this year and Libya said it may cut oil production. Light, sweet crude for August delivery rose as high as $142.26 a barrel before pulling back to $141.65, up $2.01 in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange by early afternoon European time. The contract Thursday rose $5.09 to settle at a record $139.64. The previous trading record for a front-month contract was $139.89, set on June 16.