WASHINGTON—President Obama said he has asked Attorney General Eric Holder to pay attention to possible price speculation in the oil markets as rising gas costs are raising questions about his handling of the economy.
The president, in his first news conference since November, said he has asked Mr. Holder to "reconstitute" a year-old task force to look into potential oil-price speculation.
"Do you think the president of the United States going into re-election wants gas prices to go up higher?" President Obama said.
Gas prices have risen more than 8% in recent months to $3.76 for the average price of a regular gallon of gas, prompting criticism of the president's energy policies and fears that people are illicitly benefiting from the rise.