I freely admit that I don't have a very good understanding of oil pricing beyond the front month. However what I am finding unusual is that despite the contango from Jan 2011 to December 2012 (eg. Jan 2011 at 87.22, Dec 2012 at 89.40), that the December 2012 contract is bid a few cents above the offer for December 2013 and December 2014. So while people are happy to pay a couple of dollars above the front month price for delivery in December 2012, they are able to buy the Dec 2013 and Dec 2014 contracts at prices a few cents lower than December 2012. Can anyone explain why this may be the case?