Volatile Gas Prices Opening The Door For Price Gouging

Gas Station at night

Photo: darkmatter

Earlier, we reported that retail gasoline prices were spiking on an unusual confluence of factors.While crude oil markets mostly have been unaffected by Hurricane Isaac, gas stations were raising their prices on the belief of a likely wholesale gasoline spike caused by a fire in Venezuela. 

That wholesale jump proved short-lived, and today gasoline futures fell $0.04.

GasBuddy.com’s Patrick DeHaan explains that this situation will almost certainly lead to a temporary bout of gouging:

“…stations raised their prices, even though they didn’t necessarily pay the higher [wholesale] price.

“Coupled with the fact wholesale prices are dropping sharply today, some stations may not have even had to spend more than 10-cents more than their last load, yet are charging a considerable amount more.

“In my opinion, that’s clearly a case of price gouging.”

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