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gougers

This gas station was $2.79 yesterday morning. By 6pm, it was this:

gas.jpeg

And the Mobil across the street was still selling at $2.79. Guy down the block - $2.76.

What freaking nerve.

Comments

Wonder how long it will take for the other stations to raise their price.

The Exxon stations up here in Boston saw a similar increase in price yesterday but the Golf and Amaco/BP stations are still at around $2.80.

I'm thinking about posting the below $3.00 gas prices here to piss off folks who live on the other ends of the pipelines from us.

Unlike us, y'all don't breathe this stuff when we crack it. I guess that's the hidden cost y'all aren't paying.

Got a problem? Build refineries in your back yard.

So, how's the kitten?

The Bush Administration should put a price freeze on gasoline to prevent gouging.

Right, Jon. And, having heard from so many sources that we're going to be running low on gasoline until the infrastructure's rebuilt, people will start stocking up, so next we should start rationing, right?

Price gouging is a serious issue, but unless it involves collaboration between competing interests, I'd rather the government not intervene. Messing with the market, outside of preventing fraud, is a bad idea. Interferences of that type tend to have bad unintended consequences.

If this "gouging" kills (or at least decreases) demand then I am all for it. It is obvious that if prices are kept artificially low by government imposed ceilings then demand for the product will either remain the same or increase. Both results would play havoc with supply and no one wants that, unless, of course, you like sitting in gas lines.

The cost of getting gasoline to the motorist, starting from crude oil in the supertankers, has just taken a sudden jump. This is naturally and correctly reflected in the retail price.

Here in Wisconsin, any gas station which doesn't raise the price they charge when the price they pay goes up is in violation of the law. Until the truck shows up they sell at the lower price.

Triticale's theory is an interesting one, but these retailers are mostly just selling the gas that is already in their tanks.

As far as the cost of delivery is concerned, some outages are already built into the price, and there is insurance and re-insurance for the remainder (the cost of which, of course, is already built into the base price).

So really, this is just price gouging for short-term profit, plain and simple. Here in the Pacific Northwest prices took a similar (if smaller) jump of about 22 cents per gallon between Monday and Tuesday, at SOME but not ALL gas stations. Further proof that there is no underlying cost basis for the increases, which are driven solely by the greed of individual gas station franchisees.

We are taking note of which dealers are taking the most egregious advantage of the situation, and will not patronize them in the future. Excepting vigilante action, which I do not support, that is the only recourse that common consumers have at this time, unless anti-profiteering laws are actually enforced.

Sorry, folks, but it's called supply and demand. Dry up the supply (both pipelines that supply the Northeast, as well as Atlanta where I am, were cut), sprinkle in a lack of refining capacity (thank you very much environmental lobby and every flippin' state in the union having their own octane formula and blending standards), add a hint of panic over dwindling supply and Boom! higher prices. Economics 101 - welcome to the free market economy.

Kevin is 100% correct. You can't blame the local station operator for playing the game of Free Market.

Boutique Grades of gas makes it harder to use one grade of gas in another state/county, so that means the refinery has to dedicate certain amount of its capacity for one narrow market.

HT is right that many dealers are raising the price of gas they already have, but the same market forces will drive the cost down (competition: itís a beautiful thing!), so it is perfectly legit.

Robin is correct: price caps hurt the economy!

You want real, palatable and substantial relief?? Cut gas taxes... Gas pumps in PA frequently feature a sticker telling the consumer the price per gallon includes at least $.50 in taxes!

In NYS, the state tax is a percentage of the cost of gas PLUS federal excise tax. That means NYS makes even MORE tax revenue as the price climbs. (Talk about gouging!)

In 1993 then VP Al Gore cast the deciding vote on the now infamous Gore Tax. The Senate should easily repeal it NOW and give everyone quick relief!

On Wednesday when i filled up.. I paid 2.64 for a gallon. This morning every single gas station in the city that I passed had changed its bottom grade gasoline prices to 3.14 a gallon. That's a HELL of a jump. How come they all do at once?

Angel: Because they all know they're going to be paying more, at the same time.

It's not like the wholesale prices are secret or change at significantly different rates for the different brands. (In fact, IIRC, the different brands of fuel are in most cases - in the same market, that is, not across fuel-makeup boundaries - the exact same base fuel, with just a different additive package. Though some stations, like the always-more-expensive-Shell, might use their own base fuel exclusively. Not sure.)

Raising gas prices in New York isn't gouging; that's just supply and demand, ugly as it is. You and I aren't facing a humanitarian crisis, just a supply shortage.

Gouging is, say, selling outrageously priced food, bottled water or flashlight batteries to people affected by the hurricane. That kind of gouging is as bad as the looting.

Let's see, no new refineries in how many decades? Drilling in ANWR, or off the coast of Florida, nah. Jon is probably too young to remember even-odd days and rationing. Save me from the government trying to fix this problem, because they helped create it, along with the environuts.

Blame Bush. Blame the Saudis. Blame Washington. Blame the oil companies. You might feel better, but none of it is going to bring back cheaper gas. Supply and demand will, but it will take time.

What's in your driveway? Do you really need an 8 cylinder monstrosaurus SUV?

Can you work from home one day a week? Share a ride? Combine trips? Ride a bike or walk? Or would you rather complain?

What's in your driveway? Do you really need an 8 cylinder monstrosaurus SUV?

A Mazda Millennia, but thanks for assuming.

Can you work from home one day a week?

No.
Share a ride? Combine trips?

I do every other day.

Ride a bike or walk?

Hardly.

Or would you rather complain?

Bite me.

Thanks for the explanation Sigivald. I was genuinely interested as to how they went up all at the same time.
Oh well, not gonna complain. At least I have a car (thats not filled with water or crushed by a tree) to fill up with gas in the first place.

"Gouging," aka raising prices to cope with a decrease in supply and an increase in cose is the best thing that can happen in this situation. It'll decrease demand, and dull the effects of the supply dip. It'll also allow these gas stations to stay in the black as wholesale gas prices continue to go up over the next few weeks.

Somehow people get the idea that it's a bunch of people saying "dude, you know what would be funny... if we raised prices for no reason at all, just to screw with these people."

Prices for gasoline are very competetive... it's rare to see more than a 10 cent variation within one town, and gas stations often change their prices a few times a day, sparking localized price wars.

And of course, there's always the "screw you, it's their gas, they can do whatever the hell they want with it, it's a free country" argument that is hard to argue without revealing (possibly temporary) socialist tendancies.

And yeah, repealing gas taxes would do a lot of good... but then the proles might get a taste of it and decide that they like it. And we couldn't have that now could we?

We had a station here in Houston that was at $2.79 on Wednesday morning that jumped to $3.31 by Wednesday at 3:00pm. I filled up right away for $2.75, but could have gotten it right by my house for $2.68. (It is now $2.89 there, but that is better than some places.)

I think I'll stay loyal to my neighborhood gas station. They seem to have the best deal in town.