• 5 hours Kurdish Kirkuk-Ceyhan Crude Oil Flows Plunge To 225,000 Bpd
  • 9 hours Russia, Saudis Team Up To Boost Fracking Tech
  • 15 hours Conflicting News Spurs Doubt On Aramco IPO
  • 16 hours Exxon Starts Production At New Refinery In Texas
  • 17 hours Iraq Asks BP To Redevelop Kirkuk Oil Fields
  • 1 day Oil Prices Rise After U.S. API Reports Strong Crude Inventory Draw
  • 1 day Oil Gains Spur Growth In Canada’s Oil Cities
  • 2 days China To Take 5% Of Rosneft’s Output In New Deal
  • 2 days UAE Oil Giant Seeks Partnership For Possible IPO
  • 2 days Planting Trees Could Cut Emissions As Much As Quitting Oil
  • 2 days VW Fails To Secure Critical Commodity For EVs
  • 2 days Enbridge Pipeline Expansion Finally Approved
  • 2 days Iraqi Forces Seize Control Of North Oil Co Fields In Kirkuk
  • 2 days OPEC Oil Deal Compliance Falls To 86%
  • 2 days U.S. Oil Production To Increase in November As Rig Count Falls
  • 2 days Gazprom Neft Unhappy With OPEC-Russia Production Cut Deal
  • 3 days Disputed Venezuelan Vote Could Lead To More Sanctions, Clashes
  • 3 days EU Urges U.S. Congress To Protect Iran Nuclear Deal
  • 3 days Oil Rig Explosion In Louisiana Leaves 7 Injured, 1 Still Missing
  • 3 days Aramco Says No Plans To Shelve IPO
  • 5 days Trump Passes Iran Nuclear Deal Back to Congress
  • 5 days Texas Shutters More Coal-Fired Plants
  • 6 days Oil Trading Firm Expects Unprecedented U.S. Crude Exports
  • 6 days UK’s FCA Met With Aramco Prior To Proposing Listing Rule Change
  • 6 days Chevron Quits Australian Deepwater Oil Exploration
  • 6 days Europe Braces For End Of Iran Nuclear Deal
  • 6 days Renewable Energy Startup Powering Native American Protest Camp
  • 6 days Husky Energy Set To Restart Pipeline
  • 6 days Russia, Morocco Sign String Of Energy And Military Deals
  • 6 days Norway Looks To Cut Some Of Its Generous Tax Breaks For EVs
  • 7 days China Set To Continue Crude Oil Buying Spree, IEA Says
  • 7 days India Needs Help To Boost Oil Production
  • 7 days Shell Buys One Of Europe’s Largest EV Charging Networks
  • 7 days Oil Throwback: BP Is Bringing Back The Amoco Brand
  • 7 days Libyan Oil Output Covers 25% Of 2017 Budget Needs
  • 7 days District Judge Rules Dakota Access Can Continue Operating
  • 7 days Surprise Oil Inventory Build Shocks Markets
  • 8 days France’s Biggest Listed Bank To Stop Funding Shale, Oil Sands Projects
  • 8 days Syria’s Kurds Aim To Control Oil-Rich Areas
  • 8 days Chinese Teapots Create $5B JV To Compete With State Firms
UK Oil And Gas Costs To Rise 100% If Brexit Fails

UK Oil And Gas Costs To Rise 100% If Brexit Fails

Brexit negotiators’ failure to secure…

The Natural Gas Market Is Set To Boom

The Natural Gas Market Is Set To Boom

With the new lower-for-longer oil…

Despite Oil Price Plunge, California Gasoline Prices Soar

While the low price of gasoline has many in the United States considering a return to fuel-hungry vehicles, the price actually has been rising in the country’s car capital, California, for the past month.

The average pump price of gasoline soared by about 25 cents a gallon last week, from $2.98 for regular gas on Feb. 23 to $3.23 on Feb. 27. And the rise has been greater since Jan. 30, when refineries began shifting to a costlier premium fuel – mandated only in California and only to limit emissions in warmer months, according to Tom Robinson, the chief of Robinson Oil in South Bay.

On Feb. 26, some Southern California retailers, who had just paid premium wholesale prices for gasoline, passed that on to consumers as a price hike of 24 cents per gallon. The spike hit Northern California a day later, with service stations in the San Francisco area raising prices for regular gasoline by 20 cents a gallon to $3.19.

Related: How Much Crude Oil Do You Consume On A Daily Basis?

Driving prices even higher, fuel consumption is at its highest in the state in seven years because of the balmy weather in the West this winter, which has spurred increased outdoor activity for the season, including driving.

Add to that, an explosion Feb. 18 that stopped production at an Exxon Mobil Corp. refinery in Torrance, Calif., and production can’t resume until the state completes its investigation of the event. And the United Steelworkers strike against oil companies in the United States, now affecting 15 refineries, has closed the Tesoro facility in Martinez, Calif.

Making matters even worse is that because only California begins using a unique blend of summer gasoline, it can’t conveniently and inexpensively buy it from neighboring states because they simply don’t supply it.

“Your market in California has about as much margin for error as Jennifer Lopez’s Academy Awards dress,” Tom Kloza, global head of energy at the Oil Price Information Service, told The Associated Press. “If you’re not a refiner who had a problem with a refinery this month – if you’re not Exxon Mobil – you have been rewarded with incredible profits this month. That’s just the way the market works.”

And while prices in the Rocky Mountain region remain around $2 per gallon, elsewhere in the United States the average price was up by 6 cents to $2.33 per gallon, as oil companies gradually prepare motorists for costlier gasoline during the nationwide summer driving season.

Related: Winners And Losers Of Low Gasoline Prices

“The seasonal lift in gasoline prices remains well under way across the country, with the West Coast seeing the most excruciating rate of price increases,” Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst with GasBuddy.com, told the San Diego Union-Tribune in an e-mail.

Meanwhile, consumer groups are urging state regulators and lawmakers to watch oil companies closely to prevent price manipulation. For example, Consumer Watchdog based in Santa Monica has asked that state inspectors verify that refineries were shut down for the reasons cited by their operators. It estimates that two such shutdowns have cut California’s refinery production by about 16 percent.

Whatever the inspectors find, it won’t satisfy every customer. “The thieves are at it again,” Errol Emrich of San Jose told the San Jose Mercury-News.

On Feb. 23, Emrich paid $2.89 a gallon at San Jose service station. It had some of the lowest prices in the South Bay region near San Francisco, but they’re far higher than the $2.19 per gallon that he paid around Feb 1. “That’s 70 cents in 23 days,” he said.

By Andy Tully of Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:



Join the discussion | Back to homepage

Comments currently closed.

Leave a comment

Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News