Thursday, February 27, 2014

Another ride up the gas price rollercoaster

Here's what I wrote almost two weeks ago in Good news for now as corner station lowers prices.
The three stations down the street are still at $3.39, so the holding steady is still happening.  Their prices are 36 cents cheaper than at this time last year, as I had also forecast.  That's not the best news.  The corner station dropped its price to $3.35, so it's selling gas for 40 cents a gallon less than last year.  It's also a decline, which is what I save Professor Farnsworth for.

As for how long this good news will last, probably until sometime between tomorrow and Tuesday, when stations usually raise prices.
Prices have gone up, but it took longer than I expected.  First, the corner station attempted to pull all the rest of the neighborhood outlets up with it by raising its price to $3.55 on the Tuesday I forecast for the price rise.  It turned out to be a charge into No Man's Land, as all the rest held steady at $3.35.  Then it jacked its price up to $3.59 over the weekend.  I thought it would go down again.  It didn't.  The next day, it remained up.  I was walking, not driving, so I didn't go over to see what the rest of the neighborhood stations were charging, but I realized they had to have raised their prices, too.  On Tuesday, the corner station had dropped slightly to $3.55.  That was a sure sign that the nearby stations had increased their prices, but not as high as the corner station.  I was driving, so I checked.  Two of them down the street were at $3.49, while the third matched the corner station at $3.55.  I was hoping that all would meet at $3.49.  On Wednesday, all four neighborhood outlets did exactly that.

Based on the data at Gas Buddy, I expect more price increases, as the national average has continued its slow and steady rise, having gone from $3.32 two weeks ago to between $3.42 and $3.43 today.  Metro Detroit's prices have hit another plateau, gliding done to $3.52 from $3.54 a few days ago.  Just the same, the past month's data show a disciplined stepwise increase of 5-10 cents every week, which I expect to continue for a while.  I wouldn't be surprised if next Monday or Tuesday, the corner station tries to go up as high as $3.69 before settling at $3.59.  That's the bad news.   The good news is that even if that happens, prices will still be below where they were last year.  In fact, almost exactly a year ago, gas was selling locally for $3.85 and then dropped to $3.79 a year ago today.  It's still 30 cents/gallon cheaper now than then.  Now I know why I included Professor Farnsworth in the quoted passage!


  1. I use diesel for which I have been paying more than four bucks a gallon going on a few years now. I find that the availability of the funds with which to buy it to be more volatile then the price of it. I have a thirty mile round trip of happy motoring I'm scheming to make. A Crazy Eddy trip.

    Here is something else to have an opinion on. I'd like to know yours. Who is this masked man?

    On the about page it says "there is no you and me". I'll take exception to that and and say I'm pretty sure there is a me.

    Finished 'The Gripping Hand' not to long ago.

    1. I really have to research why diesel's price went above gasoline's ten years ago and why its price is a lot more inelastic than gasoline's. My hypotheses are that demand went up, we actually export diesel, and that demand for diesel is a lot more inelastic than for gasoline. However, I need the facts to support or refute them.

      "Who is this masked man?" More like a woman. It's Carol Newquist from Clusterfuck Nation! I suspect the reason her comment as "Cold N. Holefield" was deleted was because Carol was banned since the new blog format was instituted, which likely means that any accounts traced to her will also be banned and their comments deleted. Kunstler has access to IP addresses, so he can tell when socks of banned posters show up. As for her attitude, bitter much at getting banned?


    2. Oops, didn't finish. How did you like "The Gripping Hand"?

  2. Ah Carol Newquist ! Makes sense, the blog author was bragging about being banned like a badge of honor. That narrows the choices and Carol Newquist is one of them.

    I liked The Gripping Hand. Not perfect and interesting how the authors changed up a few things up after so many years between the two volumes but good nuff for me. But we don't need a Horace Bury to know what life of extreme luxury is about. If I was in The Gripping Hand I'd have a space yacht like Bury's but could the aristocracy in The Hand have had it as good as this? The Moties are loose and what is going to happen is going to happen. I hope we don't run out of room.

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