Friday, March 30, 2012

Time to fill up

In yesterday's post, I recounted my what I saw gas prices doing in my neighborhood, then made a prediction.
Monday, the gas stations by my house had regular at $3.91/gallon. When I filled up Wednesday morning, the price by my house jumped up to $4.15/gallon and the three stations two blocks away went up to $4.03/gallon. Since oil prices were dropping at the time, I decided against filling up, so I only put in half a tank on a bet that gas prices, at least on the short term, would go down a bit. The last time I made that wager with gas prices, I won, as the station near my house dropped its price to compete with the three stations two blocks away.
I was right, twice. This morning, the station at the corner had dropped the price of regular to $4.03/gallon, while the three stations two blocks away had dropped theirs to $3.99/gallon. By this afternoon, the station at the corner had dropped its price to $3.99/gallon as well. This is how competition is supposed to work in a free market system. Now I have to fill up in the morning before prices go up again, and they will. Reuters has the story.

Brent rise towards $123 on U.S. gasoline, Mideast supply worries
Brent crude rose towards $123 on Friday as investors bet on a tighter gasoline market in the world's largest oil consumer during the peak summer driving season and on persistent worries of a supply disruption in the Middle East.

Traders took the opportunity to cover short positions and bought on price dips after oil tumbled in the past two sessions on growing talk of a release of strategic petroleum reserves by some consumer nations and a surge in U.S. crude inventories.

Front-month Brent crude rose 38 cents to $122.77 a barrel by 0254 GMT (10.54 p.m. EDT), recovering from its sharpest daily fall in more than three weeks.

U.S. crude futures was up 67 cents to $103.45 after posting the biggest two-day slide since mid-December.
Traders are bullish on gasoline as the shutdown of several refineries could reduce supply of the motor fuel in the U.S. East Coast, Furumi said. Front-month April RBOB gasoline rose 0.51 cent to settle at $3.4006 a gallon on Thursday.
All the more reason to buy a bicycle and start cycling to work.

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