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With the U.S. Administration growing more desperate by the week as gasoline prices breach $5 per gallon in the United States, President Biden is now taking aim at individual oil and gas companies—namely, ExxonMobil.
A Biden statement attempting to address May inflation data contained harsh words—both for the oil industry as a whole and Exxon specifically.
"Why aren't they drilling? Because they make more money not producing more oil," he said. "Exxon, start investing and start paying your taxes."
The President also said that they would make sure everyone knew how much Exxon was profiting. "Exxon made more money than God last year."
To be precise, Exxon's net profit was $23 billion in 2021, making up for the $22.4 billion loss the year prior. Exxon's 2021 profit came in behind Apple, Berkshire Hathaway, Alphabet, Microsoft, JP Morgan Chase, Meta Platforms, Amazon, and Bank of America—and barely eeked out a win over the Federal National Mortgage Association, Fannie Mae.
Biden’s anti-oil statement follows a similar one from Thursday, where deputy director of the National Economic Council Bharat Ramamurti told CNN in a phone interview that "It's outrageous that oil and gas companies are able to take advantage and make four times the profits that they made when there wasn't a war.” When asked about the potential for the White House to back a proposal for a windfall profit tax, Ramamurti said that they were “open to lots of different ideas. We realize there is a problem here we need to tackle.”
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for Oilprice.com, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group.