The gas price story

Rising Gas PricesEastern Sierra locals have begun to talk about gas prices again.  Prices at the pump went up recently.  Nearly 38 cents higher per gallon of regular in Mammoth Lakes.  Inyo County prices have edged up too.  National reports blame the oil producers of the world and their manipulation of supply.

Msn.com lists gas prices for Eastern Sierra towns.  Mammoth Lakes – $4.24 to $4.40 per gallon of regular unleaded; Bishop – $3.59 on the low end up to $3.89 per gallon of regular. Lone Pine – $3.69 up to $3.99 per gallon. Lee Vining shows $4.40 up to $4.70 per gallon, and Bridgeport at $4.70.

CNN news host Fareed Zakaria recently reported that the budgets of the countries that produce oil have gone up a lot.  So, to balance their national budgets, he said, these countries want to keep the price of a barrel of oil at a certain high level.  CNN reported that these countries have begun to control the supply of oil to keep prices higher.

Other factors that impact the price of gasoline at the pump are speculative investment in the oil market, taxes, refinery costs and dealer profits.  The Los Angeles Times reported that gas prices are 35 cents per gallon higher this year over last in California.

Consumption of gasoline has fallen.  According to the Times, U.S. drivers are burning about 36 million fewer gallons of gasoline a day than they did a year ago.  The Times also reported that last year was the first time that national averages for gasoline and diesel never fell below $3 per gallon.

 

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22 Responses to The gas price story

  1. JaneE January 20, 2012 at 2:56 pm #

    Let’s not forget that exports of refined petroleum products (gasoline & diesel among them) are twice what they were a decade ago. Domestic crude supplies are up also, and crude in general is (or was) far more plentiful than last year, and oil prices are up only a little, still far below what they were the last time gas was this highly priced. Oil company earnings estimates are up. Maybe the economy really is picking up enough to offset the demand reduction for gasoline.

     
  2. STEVEN January 20, 2012 at 7:11 pm #

    OPEC and Obama? Get rid of them and it will help a lot. Not only did Obama just reject the oil pipeline from Canada to Texas, that would have created the hundreds of thousands of jobs he has promised, but now OPEC is laughing at us Americans again. Who Isn’t?

     
    • Ken Warner January 20, 2012 at 11:46 pm #

      Where do you guys get this stuff?

      http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505123_162-57361212/keystone-pipeline-how-many-jobs-really-at-stake/

      Transcanada itself cast doubt on its employment forecast when a vice president for the company told CNN last fall that the 20,000 jobs Keystone would create were temporary and that the project would likely yield only “hundreds” of permanent positions.

      Another reason for the discrepancy appears to stem from what that 20,000 figure really means. As Transcanada has conceded, its estimate counted up “job years” spent on the project, not jobs. In other words, the company was counting a single construction worker who worked for two years on Keystone as two jobs, lending fuel to critics who said advocates of the pipeline were overstating its benefits.

      The Cornell researchers concluded:

      The construction of KXL will create far fewer jobs in the U.S. than its proponents have claimed and may actually destroy more jobs than it generates….

      The claim that KXL will create 20,000 direct construction and manufacturing jobs in the U.S. is unsubstantiated. There is strong evidence to suggest that a large portion of the primary material input for KXL — steel pipe — will not even be produced in the U.S.

       
      • Bret January 21, 2012 at 10:27 pm #

        So its better to not do it, after all its not going to be a hugh job creator. Ken your a great defender of Obama, tell me what can we do to creat jobs besides working for the government or get hugh loans from the government to build solar panels?

         
        • Ken Warner January 22, 2012 at 2:27 pm #

          Here’s some ideas off the top of my head:

          1) Stop outsourcing high tech jobs to the country with the lowest wages. We have plenty of high tech workers to fill all the jobs.

          2) Import duties on stuff made overseas that undercut stuff made here to make a level price playing field.

          3) Strict immigration policies including deportation of any illegal immigrant. We don’t need unskilled labor driving the wage curve down.

          4) No hiring of foreign nationals until our unemployment rate is below 2%. I’ve read that we have more than 1 out of every 10 Mexicans living and working in the U.S. Those are jobs that Americans should have.

          5) No foreign students until EVERY American that wants to go to school is enrolled in a program of his/her choice. Americans first then the rest of the World.

          6) Revisit all free trade agreements (including NAFTA) to make sure those agreements do not have a negative impact on job availability. We don’t need foreign nationals driving trucks on our highways. We have enough American truck drivers.

          7) Trade school programs to fill the gap between unskilled labor and high skilled labor. Programs for mechanics, electricians, plumbers — all the blue collar trades that seem to be the forgotten skills base. This should include training on how to run a small business and how to generate a business plan.

          8) Make the big banks be more generous with small business loans. We all gave them huge amounts of money when they were in trouble — they should pay it back. They are getting money from the Federal Reserve at just about 0% interest — they can afford to make cheap loans to people with a reasonable business plan.

          9) Programs to reintroduce people to family farming. We hear about the lack of farm workers hurting small farmers when immigration laws are strictly enforced. Americans used to be mostly agrarian. But working on a farm is not something that you can just go do. It takes a certain skill set and physical abilities. It takes time to acquire those. A program of slow re-integration with farming and ranching could bring young city people back to the land.

          And no, Obama is not doing any of those things. But he could if the friggin Congress could get it through their fat collective heads that they are supposed to be working FOR us and not AGAINST us.

           
          • Steve January 22, 2012 at 6:18 pm #

            Sounds like protectionist, so Ken tell me one nation that does not benefit from free trade. Based upon history central planning and closing itself from the outside world only resulted in inefficiencies of industry and the decline of society. North Korea does not hire any outside nationals, its based upon a central plan and no imports goes into that country.

             
          • Ken Warner January 22, 2012 at 10:16 pm #

            Us! We don’t benefit from free trade.

            Think of all the industries we’ve lost. Think of all the jobs we’ve lost. There was a time when the U.S. was the breadbasket of the World. Now we import more than half our food. We are vulnerable to trade disputes because we can no longer take care of our own needs. You think oil is expensive? Wait until the countries who grow our food start squeezing us.

            We have borrowed 3 trillion dollars from China so that we can buy cheap goods made in Asia. But many of the people who need those cheap goods don’t have the money to buy them because their job went to Asia too.

            Yes, I think we need to be protected from unrestrained capitalism. Do you know where Levis are made? Do you know where the medicine you take is made? People complain about needing jobs and then complain about the steps needed to protect our jobs.

            No wonder Obama is getting gray hair — he’s trying to lead a nation of fools….

             
          • Ken Warner January 22, 2012 at 10:36 pm #

            I said we imported over half our food. That’s not correct. We import about 20% of our food. Some categories more than others. We import 80% of our sea food.

            But given “free trade” and the abundant cheap land and labor outside the U.S. — expect that more and more of our food will be imported.

             
      • STEVEN January 24, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

        We need all the jobs we can get in this Country. Even if the pipeline would yield only 10,000 jobs! Remember! Obama allowed thousands of Mexican truckers to come on into our Country to work, thus competing with American trucker jobs and taking American jobs AWAY! This is a fact that even one sided liberal CNN cant dispute, nor you!

         
    • Wayne Deja January 21, 2012 at 10:01 pm #

      Yeah,of course…It’s Obama’s fault….Does anyone really think this pipeline would do anything but pad some rich company CEO’s pockets?…The prices of gas wouldn’t drop once it was built….All it would accomplish is the destruction of more wilderness and wildlife along the way…before and after it was built.

       
      • HAD ENOUGH January 23, 2012 at 7:09 pm #

        When are all of you Greenies going to understand how this world works. Last time I checked your Subarus don’t run on water.

         
  3. Bemused January 20, 2012 at 10:00 pm #

    Two words: Price fixing. Both globally, and locally. Unchecked capitalism will always ultimately rig the system for the benefit of the capitalists…

     
  4. Ken Warner January 21, 2012 at 12:08 am #

    …and by the way — the reason why big oil wants to build the Keystone pipeline to the Gulf Coast isn’t to create jobs or free us from dependence on Mid East oil — it’s so the refined products like gasoline can be easily exported to Central and South America.

    You’ve all been fed the usual mix of lies to disguise the real intentions of big oil — AGAIN!

    http://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.cfm?page=oil_imports

    The United States Also Exports Oil

    Because the United States is the world’s largest oil importer, it may seem surprising that it also exports about 2 million barrels a day of oil, almost all of it in the form of refined petroleum products. Due to various logistical, regulatory, and quality considerations, it turns out that exporting some barrels and replacing them with additional imports is the most economic way to meet the market’s needs. For example, refiners in the U.S. Gulf Coast region frequently find that it makes economic sense to export some of their gasoline to Mexico rather than shipping the product to the U.S. East Coast because lower-cost gasoline imports are available from Europe.

    http://money.cnn.com/2011/12/05/news/economy/gasoline_export/index.htm

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — The United States is awash in gasoline. So much so, in fact, that the country is exporting a record amount of it.

    The country exported 430,000 more barrels of gasoline a day than it imported in September, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. That is about twice the amount at the start of the year, and experts and industry insiders say the trend is here to stay.

    It’s all about the money — it’s always about the money.

     
  5. Ken Warner January 21, 2012 at 4:12 am #

    And for all of you who are agonizing over the way Obama is destroying America (again) because he is denying us the oil we need by putting a hold on the Keystone pipeline — here’s a map of the existing major crude oil pipelines. It will be tough but maybe America will pull through the Obama years with out major damage…

    http://www.theodora.com/pipelines/north_america_pipelines_map.jpg

    http://www.theodora.com/pipelines/north_america_oil_gas_and_products_pipelines.html

     
  6. JJ January 21, 2012 at 7:17 am #

    I’d like to know why Bishop prices at AM/PM , Googles and the Casino’s prices are always 1 penny different ? I thought price fixing was illegal? Am I wrong?

     
  7. JJ January 21, 2012 at 7:26 am #

    Steven- how can you believe Obama is the one to blame for OPEC? The Bush family is rich off of oil and spending the night at their palaces. Remember how our prices were 5 dollars a gal. when Bush sent this economy into a downward spiral.

     
  8. JaneE January 21, 2012 at 2:46 pm #

    Another thing you don’t hear about is the fact the the state of Nebraska isn’t happy with the pipeline either. They went into special session to pass laws requiring the state to sign off on the pipeline before it is approved. They are concerned about the routing, and the environmental impact to one of the states major aquifers. It isn’t like the TransCanada has a good record. Their Keystone I had 12 spills the first year after it was built. What will it be like after 20 years of operation? Ask the folks in Alaska and North Dakota.
    This may be an additional source of oil for the Gulf Coast refineries, but the additional Gas and Diesel will most likely go to Europe and South America, almost certainly not to California.

     
  9. John R. January 21, 2012 at 4:15 pm #

    Better get supervisor to take this issue to task too”

     
  10. Steve January 21, 2012 at 4:29 pm #

    The real reason gas prices have been going up despite declining demand is the devaluation of the US Dollar. Everything is going up in price; food, metals and energy. Washington is printing money to spend via (QE 1, 2, Operation twist) that the value of our earnings (dollars) is declining and thus an increase in commodity prices. Blaming OPEC, greedy oil companies and China is nothing but a simple distraction from the root cause. In 2011 the number one US Export was fuel, that’s right fuel so it is not supply that is cause gas to be expensive or demand right now. I have heard that devaluing the dollar can create jobs, but think about this for a moment jobs are not an end, but a means to obtain the things we want; cars, homes, nice dinner etc. If devaluation of a currency is really a solution consider other countries that debase their currency; Zimbabwe, Mexico, Roman Empire etc.
    Right now the barrier to start a business is so high only the wealthy can afford all the taxes and paperwork that is required to start a business. We need to have freedoms again, freedom of commerce to have people succeed and fail. That is what made America great and it is these principles that will make America great again.

     
  11. JJ January 21, 2012 at 5:38 pm #

    Yes Ken I’m implying Bush was in bed with the Saudi king on bottom.

     

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