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Aaron Gold

Are gas prices dropping in time for the elections?

By October 31, 2006

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Kathy Gill, About.com's guide to US Politics: Current Events, put together this thought-proviking article about falling gasoline prices. Gas prices are down 27% from the all-time high we hit this summer. Why? Dropping crude prices? Well, crude is down since August, but not enough, Kathy says, to account for a 27% drop in prices at the pump. What about supply and demand? That doesn't explain it either, says Kathy -- the current fluctuation in prices seems to go against the laws of supply and demand. There's one possible conclusion: Oil prices are dropping because mid-term elections are around the corner.

Check out Kathy's article, then tell us what you think: Are falling fuel prices following some natural economic cycle, or are they being artificially manipulated in time for the elections? Will gas prices continue to fall in November, or will they start going up again once the elections are over? Click the "comments" link and share your thoughts. -- Aaron Gold

Comments
October 31, 2006 at 8:01 am
(1) carbuzzard.com says:

Well, I’m glad that Kathy pondered it “for days.” Actually, there are people who make a living–and sometimes not–at predicting what the price of oil will be tomorrow. And the next day. And the year and decade after that.

I’m certainly no expert on oil prices, but the price of all commodities is based on anticipated events which may or may not take place. And the price of gasoline, a more short term commodity than crude, is more volatile than crude oil. (Gasoline is more affected by current events, while crude oil prices are more dependent on whether, for example, Nancy Pelosi opposes drilling to get more oil).

The recent crude oil spike is reminiscent of the tulip bubble. Oil prices have simply returned to more reasonable prices. But if supply is retricted, whether by natural or political/governmental action, prices will rise.

By the way, even a novice economist knows (or should) that prices are set by supply and demand, not by cost of production. Cost of production does affect–but does not control–supply.

October 31, 2006 at 8:02 am
(2) Ed says:

Those polition`s are liar`s and crooks and have alway`s been that way , and it is`nt going to change ! and yes it`s low because of election`s , they will try anything to get your vote !!!

October 31, 2006 at 8:15 am
(3) carbuzzard.com says:

I predict a rise in the price of apostrophes because there certainly seems to be a run on them. My stock pick of the day? Amalgamated Tinfoil Hats.

October 31, 2006 at 8:26 am
(4) Jonathan Clark says:

Actually the price of gasoline has more to do with a lack of “anticipated events” i.e. hurricanes this year. Supply and demand may not explain the drop or the previous rise however peoples fears of a future supply shortage are sometimes strong enough to create an artificial demand.

October 31, 2006 at 10:25 am
(5) ferguson says:

I’m a Republican and that’s one of the reasons I’m voting Democrat!!!

October 31, 2006 at 11:21 am
(6) Alvin Barrelston says:

This gas reduction is not only in time for the elections, but when gas was inflated at $3 a gallon, they did this to make money and to make people think $2 a gallon is a deal so people would be grateful that the oil companies are doing something for them! A whole lot of Bologna!

October 31, 2006 at 11:26 am
(7) Jim B says:

Mark my word. Within two weeks (after the elections) you will see gasoline prices mysteriously start to rise until were back in the $3.00/gal range in So. Calif.
My two cents.

October 31, 2006 at 11:28 am
(8) Dougster says:

Obviously we have insane scum crooks that took over power in 2000 with rigged elections and we haven’t been free or told the truth since…
Research 9/11! The insane corrupt bu$h/cheney commited mass murder & did it. They did commit treason and should be removed & p laced 6 feet under!

October 31, 2006 at 12:47 pm
(9) Chuck F. says:

Well, Duh!! It doesn’t take much of an economist, petroleum expert or political analyst to determine the political impact on midterm elections. The cronies of the White House have all of their investments in oil and are being protected. Why not drop the price now. Brace yourself for the change before the end of the year!

October 31, 2006 at 1:57 pm
(10) Phildee says:

Whether it’s a combination of forces that affect pump prices – greed is up there – along with the powerful petroleum miilionaires that support the Current Residents with barrels of money!

It’s ALWAYS about money and politics. It isn’t necessarily tied to the elections, the peak summer price was to soak the traveling consumer because they
COULD!

October 31, 2006 at 2:51 pm
(11) Dan says:

Thanks for the leftist Michael Moore perspective of energy prices Kathy. Looks like you started with a pre-conceived notion and worked backwards with as many factors as you could possibly find to complicate the equation. You forgot to include summer factors of Nigerian oil well kidnappings and of course the Iranian nuclear rantings?
You also wrote:
“Your answer to that question probably reflects the degree of your cynicism in today’s polarized — and financially exorbitant — campaign season.”

Of course you have no interest in adding to the polarity doya?

October 31, 2006 at 3:42 pm
(12) TMac says:

Isn’t this supposed to be About:Cars? I’m really getting tired of About:Politics.

October 31, 2006 at 3:54 pm
(13) eugene says:

of course it is!! This current gang of republican oil-crats in the white house has been “in bed” with the oil companies since Day 1. US drivers have been played like yo-yos, with oil company bank accounts swelling while ours run dry.

October 31, 2006 at 5:26 pm
(14) dan says:

This is just Aaron Gold’s pathetic attempt at taking a shot at the current administration with unfounded and ludicrous conspiracy theories. Obviously there are a few nuts out there who post here and actually believe this crap.

October 31, 2006 at 5:55 pm
(15) Coronado says:

This isn’t too surprising, many things rise and fall with election cycles. Look at the correllation with the stock market and presidential cycles and you will find an not so cooincidental pattern.

October 31, 2006 at 6:02 pm
(16) Aaron Gold - Cars Guide says:

Anyone who thinks that the price of gasoline is tied solely to supply-and-demand or any other natural market force is fooling themselves. Oil companies blame market forces for prices, but every year they post record-breaking profits. Sure, business is entitled to make a profit — but the cost of gasoline is hurting the economy, putting the squeeze on the auto industry, and making it tougher for middle-class folks like me to put dinner on the table. The current government has more or less left the oil companies alone through all this gouging, and the companies know that when people get upset about things like gas prices, they blame the government first (even if the government can’t do anything about it). So yes, I believe this is complete and total manipulation. Let’s see where gas prices are come the beginning of December. My prediction is that they will be up. Can’t blame the Middle East, since people are slowly starting to figure out that most of our oil imports come from Canada and Mexico. Perhaps they’ll blame it on the XMas travel season. Like CarBuzzard says, it’s always in response to anticipated events — it’s whether or not those anticipated events have any basis in reality that is the question.

Remember, fuel prices always follow the same basic pattern: They go up to some insane amount, then drop down to a point where people consider them reasonable, but higher than before. That’s how you raise gas prices from $1.60 to $2.40: First raise it to $3, then when it drops down to $2.40, people will be happy to pay the new, higher prices. Call me a nut, call me a conspiracy theorist, call it crap, but I’m just calling ‘em as I sees ‘em! – Aaron Gold – Cars Guide

October 31, 2006 at 7:10 pm
(17) Kathy says:

Hi, CarBuzzard!

Yes, supply & demand impact prices — and we also know that prices are sticky “downward” at the retail level. That is, they go up quickly (on rumor or fact) but move back “down” far more slowly.

Thanks for your suggestion that retail prices are *independent* of costs … that they are entirely a function of “supply and demand” or some sort of “anticipation” about what might happen in the future.

Prices of commodities on *futures* markets are affected by anticipated events.

This statement

is not accurate.

In a market with perfect competition (granted, this “free” market exists only in the mouths of politicians and theoretical economists), prices at the micro-level (the firm) are based on point where marginal cost = the price point.

So your argument that supply costs have no impact on “price” may be the way the oil world works (I agree) but it’s not the way “free markets” work.

Now then … look at the chart!

Prices at the pump peaked earlier this summer and fell more steeply than last summer — with no domestic interruption in supply (at the raw material or refined product end of the spectrum).

This is an interesting analysis of the oligopolistic (and oligopsonist) market that is “oil and gasoline”
http://www.mydd.com/story/2006/2/2/13526/18062

Kathy

October 31, 2006 at 7:14 pm
(18) Kathy says:

Hi, Dan:

You wrote:

Well, no. I started by pouring over data from the Department of Energy, but I will admit that the DOE chart (the image in the article) struck a chord.

I kept looking for the data that supported DOE “analysis” … and, as I pointed out … it was MIA in many cases.

For example, in their narrative, they say “reserves are up!” but their own data doesn’t reflect that.

Folks are gonna believe what they want to believe.

Prices ARE sticky downward at the retail level. So having a drop like this one — an unprecedented drop — should raise eyebrows.

Kathy

October 31, 2006 at 7:24 pm
(19) Allura says:

Gas prices go down, terrorism scares go up. It has the fingerprints of Karl Rove all over it. But we won’t be fooled again!

October 31, 2006 at 7:40 pm
(20) Russ says:

Kathy left out a key component in the price of gasoline. Profit! And there’s nothing wrong with profit. Price is determined by supply and demand, and supply is somewhat determined by anticipated market risk. If a refiner thinks there will be hurricanes, they’ll buy more oil to refine, which drives up the price of oil, then refine it and store some of it, because they are betting that the price will rise due to hurricanes (or other events) that interrupt supply, so they can sell and make more profit. So the profit incentive means that the oil companies build supply so that if there’s an interruption, they can sell their extra stock. Which is good for us all, because it keeps prices from going even HIGHER if something bad happens. If those events don’t take place, then the extra gasoline out there means prices come down. Which is just what happened.

Also, yes, Kathy is right that prices traditionally drop after Labor day because Labor day is the end of the summer driving season, so there is less demand. There’s another impact though because of an environmental regulation. Summer gasoline has a lower Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) which means it doesn’t evaporate as quickly as gasoline sold in the winter. In the winter you WANT a higher RVP so that gasoline will properly vaporize in your cold engine. It costs less to make low RVP gasoline, so more is made, thus, more supply, and lower prices. Again, just what we’re seeing.

Now, if we have a cold winter, heating oil demand increases, which means price increases, so refiners will shift their operation to make more heating oil. More heating oil means less gasoline, lower supply, and thus higher prices.

Contrary to popular belief, oil companies don’t have the power to manipulate the market. If they did, I assure you gasoline would not be selling for just $2.00 per gallon. Politicians do have one way to manipulate the market–and that’s by raising taxes, and you can fully expect one of the parties to do just that. In fact, in 1992 Clinton’s first failure was an attempt to implement a BTU tax, which simply would have been a tax on all energy consumed including gasoline. If you want higher gasoline prices, you know who to vote for. If you want to pay less for gasoline, the easiest thing to do is drive more slowly. The difference between driving 75 and 65 is about 10 to 15% in gasoline consumption.

October 31, 2006 at 7:42 pm
(21) Russ says:

Correction: It costs less to make HIGH RVP gasoline, not low. Sorry for the error.

October 31, 2006 at 7:47 pm
(22) GCH says:

I thought this site was supposed to be “about cars,” not about political drivel by people who flunked economics. This is the second moronic political viewpoint espoused here this week. If this keeps up, I will look for another “about cars” site to monitor.

October 31, 2006 at 7:56 pm
(23) Russ says:

Regarding Kathy’s post about gasoline stocks, the website below shows that today’s gasoline stocks are about 10% higher than this time last year, and that spot market prices are lower this year than last year. There are also tons of data available on the net which show that, contrary to Kathy’s assertion, the recent drop in gasoline prices are ANYTHING BUT unprecedented. As she correctly said, people believe what they want to believe, so if they want to believe someone is out there manipulating the markets, then data will not stop them from believing that.

http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/oog/info/twip/twip_gasoline.html

October 31, 2006 at 9:24 pm
(24) David J. Benedict says:

Gas oh boy you tell me why they can sell gas on one end of town for $2.30 and the other end of town for $2.10 same station??? Ninty-five percent are company owen and they can control the price and the say they don’t do gouging and ALL THE BOYS IN WASHINGTON DO NOT SEE ANYTHING.

October 31, 2006 at 11:40 pm
(25) dan says:

Aaron and Kathy,

Thanks for more Michael Moore conspiracy crap theories. Now tell us what you conveniently left out? How do politicians do it? They must know every commodity trader in Chicago, NY, LA etc and all of these traders are in cahoots to manipulate the prices along with the corporate CEO’s eh? BTW-Oil in fungible and has nothing to do with where it comes from. You just exposed yourself as an economic idiot.

Pull the other one. Don’t call yourselves journalists, call yourselves opinion writers. It would be much more accurate.

And while you’re at it, I suppose you bought inot the idea that Bush blew up the Towers and then shot the airliners out of the sky?

You have no credibility anymore, not that you ever did among people who pay attention. Maybe your hollywood dribble plays well to the leftist wackoos but stop wasting our time with such lunacy. Please!!

November 1, 2006 at 2:35 am
(26) Aaron Gold - Cars Guide says:

Dan — I’ve never claimed to be anything but an opinion writer. The stuff you read about cars here on About.com Cars are the opinions of myself and the writers, as is the case with many automotive publications. There are plenty of places on the Web and elsewhere to get the dry facts about cars. We try to give you our opinions, and explain enough about where we are coming from that you can decide for yourself if a given car suits you or not.

BTW, I’m not saying the politicians are directly manipulating oil prices; I am saying that the oil companies that set those prices know they have a good thing — a government that is friendly to the industry and willing to set policy that is advantageous. The fact that they can get members of the very public they are fleecing to come to their defense must have them laughing all the way to the bank.

More car reviews coming tomorrow. :) – Aaron

November 1, 2006 at 7:41 am
(27) Tim Nellist says:

I would be willing to bet a lunch at a fast food counter that oil prices will rise soon after the election. Bush and his friends from texas will have lost the big marbles!!!

November 1, 2006 at 7:40 pm
(28) Dan says:

A government that is friendly to the industry? You would have the government unfriendly to the industry, or any industry? Speaks volumes about your ideology. You and people of your ilk would nationalize such industries in your quest to socialize our great country.

BTW-No fleecing going on here. It’s a free market and if you and your kind don’t want to pay at the pump, walk.

Hey Tim. What the heck are the “big marbles”?

November 1, 2006 at 7:58 pm
(29) Aaron Gold - Cars Guide says:

Dan — So according to your logic, it would be acceptable to raise gas prices to $4 or $5 per gallon, correct? What about the companies that raised prices to $6 in the wake of the Florida hurricanes a couple of years ago — if I understand you right, that wasn’t fleecing. If “their kind” (their kind being hurricane victims) didn’t want to pay at the pump, I suppose they could have gone without gas for their cars or portable generators, correct?

There is a difference between nationalization/socialization and government oversight. Personally, I believe that companies have a right to operate freely so long as they operate fairly. When they stop acting in the best interests of the people, that’s when the government needs to step in. I’m sure people of your ilk, Dan, would comment that us pinko lefty commie wannabes advocate stepping in all the time. Please, allow that we have *some* common sense. You’re talking about socialization. I’m talking about regulation along the lines of child labor laws and airline safety regulations.

By the way — remember those rolling blackouts that California had a couple of years ago? Here in the City of Los Angeles proper, we weren’t affected. Our power comes from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power — a publically owned utility. The folks without juice were those who got power from private utility companies, those that operate in the best interest of their shareholders. LADWP, which operates in the best interest of their customers, kept the lights on (and if memory serves, sold power to the private utilities). Call me a Hollywood liberal type, call me a left-leaning socialist, call me Michael Moore’s secret lover, but the fact is that the oil companies have a proven track record of fleecing its customers. Lucky they have people of your ilk who will defend them no matter what they do. – Aaron

PS – As for Hollywood drivel — About.com Cars writer BJ Killeen lives a full quarter-mile closer to Hollywood than I do, and she’s *way* more conservative than I am! :)

November 2, 2006 at 4:31 am
(30) Kathy says:

Despite the fact that many of you have poo-poohed my questioning of the dramatic drop in price … another economist has reached the same conclusion. Well, actually, his conclusion is more damning because he uses more data.

His analysis shows that since the 1996 election, the retail price of gas, minus the cost of crude (refining, profit, marketing, distribution) is lower for election years than for non-election years. (one exception, 2000)

The difference this year is unprecedented.

AND analysts and oil companies are acknowleding that their fourth quarter profits will be DOWN relative to third quarter.

http://uspolitics.about.com/b/a/207914.htm

Kathy

PS … sorry about the “blank” lines in my prior comments … whatever I was using to show quoted material apparently did not agree with the system.

November 2, 2006 at 12:37 pm
(31) Matt says:

Aaron – who decides when a company is operating “fairly?” What does “fairly” mean? To me, that is what is scary. I don’t want some member of Congress telling us what is “fair.” “Exxon, you’ve made enough money this year, you must cut your gas price to $1 per gallon for the rest of the year.”

By the way, all the money that these oil companies make goes into oil exploration and new technologies for retrieving oil which helps us in the long run.

November 2, 2006 at 1:01 pm
(32) Russ says:

Kathy and Aaron:

Regarding the Hurricane Katrina price “gouging” (and by the way, I lived in New Orleans at the time, and got out before Katrina) let me start with an example of “gouging”.

This example is partially based on a true case in Florida. After one of the hurricanes in 2004, a store owner who had a generator was the only store in a several mile radius who had ice. So he raised his price from $1.00 per bag to $10.00 per bag. “Outrageous! Gouging!” was the cry from the media. He was forced by law to lower his price back to $1.00 per bag, and within an hour all of his ice had been sold. Two hours later, a man who had a sick child came in. His baby was on a liquid antibiotic which had to be refrigerated, but he was out of ice, and his power was still out. He was willing to pay $10.00 or more for a bag of ice, but there was none. And there would not be another shipment of ice in a long time. The local plants couldn’t make because power was out.

Now, suppose the store owner would have been allowed to keep the ice at $10.00 per gallon. What would happen? The guy who came in so he could make a margarita for his wife would have been mad and decided not to spend $10 for a bag of ice, so the guy with the sick baby would have been able to buy some. Likewise, other local storeowners would have decided that maybe it would be worth it to put in a generator for the next storm, since they could justify the cost with the extra income from $10 ice. Also, ice plants from 100 miles away would make extra ice, load up the truck, and ship it in, to sell it at a nice profit. All this extra ice coming in would mean that everyone who really needed it could buy it, and also with the extra supply coming in, the price would drop.

The same thing happened with Hurricane Katrina with the price of gasoline. Supply of gasoline was disrupted because several local refineries were shut down (huge refineries, actually) and supply of oil was disrupted because of loss and shut down of oil platforms in the gulf of Mexico, and from lost shipping due to weather conditions. Demand was also up because everyone was trying to drive out of New Orleans. I guarantee you I and everyone else leaving New Orleans would have gladly paid $5 to $10 a gallon of gasoline just to get out. The higher prices in Louisiana meant oil companies moved gasoline there (which kept us on the road) and this also meant decreased supply in other parts of the country. Of course, this also meant higher prices. I also had to evacuate from Hurricane Rita, and it was such a huge evacuation that a lot of people ran out of gas and had to stop on the road. The very next day oil companies trucked in fuel and got people on the road again. I was on the road and saw this happening. (And for the record, I’m a biochemical engineer, and I don’t work for an oil company, though I have in the past).

I’ll say one other thing about prices. Oil companies, just like everyone in a commodity market, just like wheat farmers, egg producers, and orange juice producers, always charge as much as they possibly can for a gallon of gasoline. To reduce profits just so one politician or another can win would mean being fired by the CEO, or board of directors, or shareholders, all of whom are more interested in profits than in getting an official elected.

And regarding the study about profits during election time, every other year, we have an election. That means there’s a 50% chance the profits could be up or down, and if I flip a coin three times and get heads three times, that doesn’t mean I cheated. Correlation does not imply causality. Richard Nixon was not able to contain a conspiracy, that, compared to the price-fixing conspiracy suggested above, was minor. There’s no way oil companies could collectively conspire to keep prices low for a candidate.

To do this, every single company would have to agree to hold back prices, and if even one disagreed, the whole scheme would fall apart.

Russ

November 2, 2006 at 1:55 pm
(33) Russ says:

Regarding the graphic of supposed “refinery profits” I have several comments. First, the difference between WTI (West Texas Intermediate Crude) and spot market gasoline price is NOT the same thing as refinery profit, though it can be an crude (as in not very accurate) indicator. However, there were several UNPRECEDENTED events in late 2005 and 2006 which contributed to the increase in gasoline, and thus to a large decrease as those issues resolved. One you know about — Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. What you don’t know is that there were refineries safely shut down and restarted which had NEVER BEEN shutdown completely since they were built. Shutting a refinery is a huge, very difficult and dangerous event, and bringing it back up is even more difficult. It takes at MINIMUM 24 hours to safely shut down a refinery, and several days to bring it back up to speed. It takes a lot of work and is very expensive.

Another unprecedented event was the elimination of MTBE from the gasoline pool. Years ago the EPA mandated the use of oxygenates including MTBE and ethanol in gasoline (over objections by the oil industry from environmental concerns). Years later, the EPA ruled the MTBE had to be ELIMINATED from gasoline over environmental concerns. This meant that pipelines and storage had to switch from MTBE to another oxygenate (ethanol) which cannot be blended with gasoline before shipping in the pipeline. (MTBE can be blended). The logistics of this change caused a significant supply disruption is some parts of the country, which was another cause of price spikes.

Finally, various risk avoidance mechanisms like futures buying and hedging kicked in to mitigate risks from supply disruptions caused by an anticipated severe 2006 hurricane season which never materialized, and due to concerns over Iran’s and Hezbollah’s escalation of hostilities in the Middle East.

For a good graphic of oil prices (adjusted for inflation) and the world events happening at the time, see http://www.wtrg.com/oil_graphs/oilprice1947.gif.

November 2, 2006 at 2:06 pm
(34) Tim says:

Dan,
Just randomly throwing insults and then talking about commodity traders and posing as an economic expert does not discredit their arguments. Stop being a jackass.

November 2, 2006 at 2:12 pm
(35) Tim says:

Yes, this is a theory.
But, Dan, you assume that they were knocking the administration in saying that the elections affect the price.
Then you immediately link anyone with a differing opinion to Moore.
How convenient for you.

November 2, 2006 at 3:25 pm
(36) Kyle says:

My understanding of “About:Cars” was that the column was devoted to CARS. Instead I get a veiled swipe at the current administration. This column will be removed from my RSS feed and I will it from here on out. Learn your econ. Gas isn’t priced like gum.

So many of you trumpet high gas mileage cars this should be perfect for you. High gas prices promote sales of higher MPG vehicles and research into alternative fuels. Quit your whining.

November 2, 2006 at 4:33 pm
(37) Russ says:

I too joined this forum to read about cars, but I’ve enjoyed the discussion on economics and politics of gasoline prices. I’d like to recommend a couple of books I recently read on economics that were interesting reads and full of information.

The first is “Freakonomics” by Steven Levitt. It’s really more about using statistics and logical reasoning to tease meaning out of empirical data than about economics, and it’s readable and entertaining. The second is “Applied Economics: Thinking Beyond Stage One” by Thomas Sowell. Sowell is a brilliant economist, and this book illustrates basic economic concepts with everyday examples in easily understandable and interesting prose. I may have taken part of the “Ice Story” above from this book, and if I did I apologize to Dr. Sowell for not telling it as well as he does. Enjoy.

Russ

November 2, 2006 at 5:53 pm
(38) Patton says:

Fascinating. I took the data in http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/steo/pub/fsheets/petroleumprices.xls, and subtracted the real crude oil price (Column K) from the real gasoline price (Column E) and found, much to my surprise, that the difference almost always falls in November, whether it’s an election year or not. In fact, in November of 2005, the difference between crude and gasoline price fell from $1.50 to $0.95, whereas this year it fell from $1.32 to $0.92 per gallon. Let me repeat that. In an off-year, last year, the price fell even more than it fell this year. What’s going on? Are the oil companies taking more profit than usual at this time of year to force a change? They must be really torqued about not gettin’ as much oil from Iraq as they thought.

The price difference also fell in Nov ’03, but it rose in Nov ’02. That doesn’t fit what y’all said. The price also rose just before Nov ’88. Don’t take my word for it, check out the data.

November 2, 2006 at 11:32 pm
(39) carbuzzard.com says:

A question for the conspiracy theorists: If we can’t keep top secret anti-terrorist national security information of the front page of the New York Times, how do you think President Bush would be able to keep a gasoline price fixing conspiracy off the front page of everything from the Times to My Weekly Reader? Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid would even come out of pre-election hiding for that one.

November 15, 2006 at 12:42 pm
(40) Dan says:

Tim, Aaron and Kathy.

Tim,

If the shoe fits. And just like the other two morons you offer no rebuttal or account as to how the administration can facilitate lowering prices and then raising them after the election.

Aaron and Kathy,

Still waiting for Bush to raise gas prices again. Still waiting for your explanation as to how they do it?

November 15, 2006 at 12:55 pm
(41) Dan says:

Just read #29 and it’s obvious that talking basic economics with you is a waste of time. You are so driven by your emotions that you can never come back to the real world.

I hope you don’t have your money invested with a 401K or mutual fund as they are probably investing your money in one of those “fleecers”. But as long as your own portfolio increases that’s probably alright eh?

I’ll have to assume your knowledge of the auto industry is blinded by your ideology and inability to see reason and facts for what they are.

November 16, 2006 at 8:53 pm
(42) Aaron Gold - Cars Guide says:

Hey Dan –

Not sure why you’re waiting for Bush to raise oil prices. He can’t. I discussed that earlier, but clearly careful reading of opposing viewpoints isn’t your strong suit.

However, as I predicted, gas prices are, indeed, up this week over last — according to the Energy Information Administratin, prices dropped again during the week leading up to the elections, and then began to rise again. As of 11/13, national prices are up 3.2 cents over last week, 5.7 cents in California and 8.3 cents here in Los Angeles.

I’m not one to say I told you so, but, well, I told you so.

Aaron

November 19, 2006 at 9:24 am
(43) Patton says:

Aaron:

I hate to say what the heck, but hey, what the heck? You claim that first oil companies dropped the price of gasoline, then raised them after the election. But the source you cite doesn’t confirm that. Yes, the price rose just after the election, then it fell again. More to the point, if your thesis is correct, then the price should have risen more like 80 cents than 3 cents, since that’s how much it dropped in the months leading up to the election.

More to the point, I want to know why the price dropped in Rotterdam before the election, then rose. Are you telling me that the Dutch also voted in the US elections? Otherwise, why would the oil companies drop the price in Rotterdam? What about Singapore? The price there dropped as well. Or was this a world wide conspiracy?

The data are from :
http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/dnav/pet/pet_pri_spt_s1_d.htm

Patton

May 20, 2007 at 10:19 pm
(44) mike says:

Where are all the closed gas stations because there was a shortage on oil? I guess the ol supply and demand theory didn’t fly too well. The reason for the price increase is to pay for our troops to use Saudi Arabia land and air space to fight the war in Iraq. Not to mention that our leaders are making a huge profit in oil on Wall Street. Price fixing is illegal that’s why gas will never do back down where it should be. Our leaders would be in prison if the truth ever came out. By the way, some local concrete companys were charged with price fixing bags of concrete and were convicted.

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