facebook linkedin twitter

Biden Suspects Oil Companies Are Illegally Jacking Up Prices At The Pump

November 17, 2021 by Dan McCue
(Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS)

WASHINGTON — President Biden asked the Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday to investigate if oil companies are illegally driving up gas prices.

In a letter to FTC Chair Lina Khan, the president says there is “mounting evidence of anti-consumer behavior by oil and gas companies” noting that gasoline prices at the pump remain high, despite the fact the costs associated with gasoline production are declining.

Biden previously asked Brian Deese, the director of the National Economic Council, to reach out to the FTC and ask it to monitor the U.S. gasoline market and address any illegal conduct uncovered.

Since then, the FTC has increased its scrutiny over mergers in the oil and gas sector, events the White House says result in less consumer choice and potentially higher prices. 

In outlining his concerns, Biden said typically “prices at the pump correspond to movements in the price of unfinished gasoline, which is the main ingredient in the gas people buy at the gas station. 

“But in the last month, the price of unfinished gasoline is down more than 5% while gas prices at the pump are up 3% in that same period,” he wrote. “This unexplained large gap between the price of unfinished gasoline and the average price at the pump is well above the pre-pandemic average. 

“Meanwhile, the largest oil and gas companies in America are generating significant profits off higher energy prices. The two largest oil and gas companies in the United States, as measured by market capitalization, are on track to nearly double their net income over 2019-the last full year before the pandemic,” Biden continued.

“I do not accept hard-working Americans paying more for gas because of anti-competitive or otherwise potentially illegal conduct,” he said.

In a statement provided to The Well News, Frank Macchiarola, senior vice president of policy, economics and regulatory affairs at the American Petroleum Institute said the president’s request “is a distraction from the fundamental market shift that is taking place and the ill-advised government decisions that are exacerbating this challenging situation.

“Demand has returned as the economy comes back and is outpacing supply,” Macchiarola continued. “Further impacting the imbalance is the continued decision from the administration to restrict access to America’s energy supply and cancel important infrastructure projects. Rather than launching investigations on markets that are regulated and closely monitored on a daily basis or pleading with OPEC to increase supply, we should be encouraging the safe and responsible development of American-made oil and natural gas.”

A+
a-

Economy

Supply Chain Problems Hit Charities' Holiday Gifts for Kids

With less than four weeks to go until Christmas, Kristyn Begari has been rushing to find enough doll styling heads... Read More

With less than four weeks to go until Christmas, Kristyn Begari has been rushing to find enough doll styling heads to give to kids in need. But, the purchasing coordinator for the California-based nonprofit Family Giving Tree says it's been difficult to find them, or racially... Read More

World Shares, US Futures Slip on Worries Over Omicron Risks

NEW YORK (AP) — Global shares mostly slipped Tuesday as investors cautiously weighed how much damage the new omicron coronavirus... Read More

NEW YORK (AP) — Global shares mostly slipped Tuesday as investors cautiously weighed how much damage the new omicron coronavirus variant may unleash on the global economy. Germany's DAX lost 1.1% to 15,106.35 in afternoon trading. France’s CAC 40 slipped 0.9%, while Britain's FTSE 100 shed... Read More

Stores Kick Off Black Friday But Pandemic Woes Linger

NEW YORK (AP) — Retailers are expected to usher in the unofficial start to the holiday shopping season Friday with... Read More

NEW YORK (AP) — Retailers are expected to usher in the unofficial start to the holiday shopping season Friday with bigger crowds than last year in a closer step toward normalcy. But the fallout from the pandemic continues to weigh on businesses and shoppers' minds. Buoyed... Read More

US Jobless Claims Hit 52-Year Low After Seasonal Adjustments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits plummeted last week to the lowest level in more... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits plummeted last week to the lowest level in more than half a century, another sign that the U.S. job market is rebounding rapidly from last year's coronavirus recession. Jobless claims dropped by 71,000 to 199,000,... Read More

Beyond Manchin: Dems' $2T Bill Faces Senate Gauntlet

WASHINGTON (AP) — It took half a year but Democrats have driven President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion package of social... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — It took half a year but Democrats have driven President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion package of social and climate initiatives through the House. It gets no easier in the Senate, where painful Republican amendments, restrictive rules and Joe Manchin lurk. Facing unbroken GOP opposition, Democrats... Read More

Biden to Keep Powell as Fed Chair, Brainard Gets Vice Chair

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden announced Monday that he's nominating Jerome Powell for a second four-year term as Federal... Read More

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden announced Monday that he's nominating Jerome Powell for a second four-year term as Federal Reserve chair, endorsing Powell's stewardship of the economy through a brutal pandemic recession in which the Fed's ultra-low rate policies helped bolster confidence and revitalize the... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top