Wednesday, August 31, 2005

If the choice was paying $3 a gallon for gas or being a resident of New Orleans or Biloxi, I would choose the former.Now, what’s next for gas prices? The September gasoline futures contract, which expires today, went out of control yesterday, rising from $2.06 to $2.47 a gallon. I’m having a hard time believing this is a good approximation of wholesale prices. What I do in my calculations is average the current and next month contracts, and that gives us an estimate of $2.34 on wholesale prices, which corresponds to $3.10 for retail prices, with the 20-cent margin, but no fudge factor. Meanwhile, the government just announced that it is going to release oil from the U.S. Strategic Reserve, and there are reports on grandrapidsgasprices.com that Speedway just posted another price to $3.19. Right now, I can’t even guess what is going to happen five minutes from now.

And on Thursday, prices went up to $3.39, but not everyone matched that price hike.

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