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How does gas at $4 and higher impact you?

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Comments

  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,907
    That and domestic demand from trucks, now that railroad lines have been dismantled in many places - no lobbying behind it, I'm sure.
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,118
    edited December 2013
    I think it's an urban legend that a few big speculators can influence the oil market to nearly the extent that you described, although it plays very well as a conspiracy theory. The oil market is too vast for that. OPEC can do it for a period because they have sufficient control over supplies, but not a few big speculators, savvy as they may be.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    There is no good explanation for oil going to $150 per barrel. OPEC was not behind it. I think you underestimate the power of the media to work folks up into a buying and selling frenzy. Certain insiders are aware and participate accordingly. How else do you explain Soros making billions shorting oil? He almost bankrupted the Bank of England in 1992 if memory serves. I think it was called Black Wednesday.

    George Soros, the most high profile of the currency market investors, made over 1 billion GBP profit by short selling sterling.
  • berriberri Posts: 4,000
    I think you may be discounting the impact from derivatives. Basically these have turned things like oil into a carnival game. You can make outsized bets on oil prices and not lose any more than what you bet. Oil prices were much more stable in the old days when you actually had to take physical delivery, or sell the holdings in a panic, when the option term expired. I think that less investor risk has translated into more volatile consumer pricing.
  • jae5jae5 Posts: 1,205
    Yes, it's kind of ridiculous. I've been tracking my fuel purchases for many years and the prices, though it has peaks and valleys, has had more and more peaks than anything.

    There just seems to be major disconnects with these stories and what really happens. It's as if they see one price under a certain point then run with it.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    Berri, you have pegged it exactly. The administration promised to correct that situation so we would not have any more 2008 run-ups on oil. Not sure what has been done. I don't think the price will come down much from where it is currently as the dollar is diluted with QE. The low price of WTI is keeping our gas prices in check. OPEC basket is at $108, about $11 over WTI.
  • jae5jae5 Posts: 1,205
    I think you guys all make good points concerning the petrol prices. I think there was major manipulation during that time period of $147 oil, from not on speculation but also media. I remember watching Faux "News" and every so-called expert were ratcheting up where they knew oil was going. Then the talking head would sensationalize it, even adding to it..."well, I can see oil going to $110, $115, maybe even $120 a barrel...OMG, $120 a barrel?!?!? And it just kept going on and on. Add in the shorting and bingo.

    I just think when things were, in a sense, deregulated and you no longer had to take delivery of the commodity the reigns were off and it was off to the races. Add in the constant civil unrest reports, which there was always this unrest and it didn't cause huge price jumps before, and the prices went even higher.

    I also remember going into fuel stations where instead of crap-TV being on, they were tuned into MSNBC, CNBC, Faux or Bloomberg, watching the ticker for oil & gas prices. It was not uncommon to have a station increase their prices once or twice in a day during this period.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    These video clips are a good reason to stay inside during the current mess. Just talked to my Daughter in Law. They are on Interstate 64 from the Airport in St Louis to Indiana, averaging about 25 MPH. They said they have never seen so my trucks and cars in the ditch. And they were both born and raised in Alaska. Pretty bad across the Midwest.

    http://www.youtube.com/embed/xKy2lLNQYrI?rel=0&iv_load_policy=3&showinfo=0
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,937
    edited December 2013
    Last week I fell hard on an icy spot and was wishing I was wearing my snowboarding helmet. My wife and I were holding hands and I drug her down with me.

    And this was on the beach!

    So far I've shoveled about 8 or 9 inches today. Bracing. :)

    The WSJ reports that the US Gulf Coast refineries are awash in crude and "a barrel of Louisiana crude fetched $9.46 less than a barrel of comparable-quality crude in England" mid-week.

    "Some industry officials argue that U.S. light crude will simply displace more "heavy" imported oil. But many Gulf Coast refineries are set up to turn the more viscous crude into diesel fuel, and converting their facilities to process additional light oil wouldn't be easy." (WSJ - registration link)

    But, only gasoline prices seem to be going down, not diesel.
  • berriberri Posts: 4,000
    Personally, I'm very nervous of what happens when the Federal Reserve induced bubbles begin to burst. Their track record is not good. It will hit investments, commodities, currencies... I think they have gone too far and will have trouble smoothly changing course. I also don't think they should be inflating and propping up markets or choosing winners and losers (e.g. wealthy investors are making out, while middle class savers and retirees are getting screwed).
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    Fun! I love this stuff. In my post-Alaskan experience with snow storms in the lower 48, there's no reason to have much respect for the winter driving abilities of those Americans less seasoned by winter. :P
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    Just talked to my son. They made it home from St Louis. He said much of the trip was a white out like in Prudhoe. No collisions. Just a lot of vehicles in the ditches. Kind of like Anchorage during the first couple snowfalls of the winter. Difference most of the lower 48 states do not allow studded tires for the ice.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,937
    edited December 2013
    Can't find the post now but someone recently linked to a list of states that allowed studded tires, and it was a much longer list than I would have guessed.

    Here's a list of states that allow them in one form or another: tirebuyer.com

    "Enjoyed" a brisk walk down to a fish fry place tonight - around 8°, blowing and snowing. We saved a half buck on gas walking but the thermostat got cranked up to 72 when we got back home. :)
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681
    Interesting. I just remember living in MN back in the 1970s when they outlawed studded tires. I am not a fan. I would rather drive sensibly on ice. Then I had a LOT of experience with 8 months of ice a year in the Arctic without using studded tires.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,907
    I remember, as a kid in snowy eastern WA back in the 80s ice age, my mother would leave chains on her car for what seemed like eons (in 8 year old terms, probably a week).
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    Yeah, not a fan of studs either. They are absolutely fantastic for a very short period of time, then they are just noisy and, often, the tires aren't as good as studless winter tires because they rely too heavily on the studs. Winter tire technology has come a long, long way since the 1970s, though. I really don't think studs are necessary any longer.

    Fuel is still holding at ~$3.60 a gallon here, which is good since I just had to fill up my plow truck this morning. I put in 16 gallons, and I think I drove it about 10 miles since the last fill. LOL :sick:

    Unbelievable weather here, though. I think most of the rest of the continent is probably colder than us. We're sitting at an astounding 0C/32F right now! We even have snowman snow!
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269

    I must confess that I'm a little afraid of what our fuel prices in interior Alaska will be in a few months after the local refinery shuts down. I expect a solid $1 spike that will not go away. Time will tell.

  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,937
    edited February 21

    Funny how the state loaned all that money to build a big tank farm at Port MacKenzie so that more Outside gas can be barged up and stored close to Anchorage. $14 million bucks. Plus the airlines expanded their jet fuel capacity down there too with lots of new tank capacity.

    Sounds like the environmental cleanup is going to be expensive when they close the refinery too.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269

    Yeah, but honestly, that whole area is so plagued by environmental disasters over the last 80 years, I don't know why they'd even bother. Time heals all wounds, right?!

    Much of the SC jet fuel came from this refinery, so I'm not sure what the picture in Alaska is going to look like soon.

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,681

    Cheaper than last year at this time. On 2/21/13 I paid $4.09 at Costco. Yesterday it was $3.59.

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