9:00AM: The dramatic slide in wholesale gasoline prices that started at the end of August is continuing this week. Wholesale prices are a dime a gallon lower than a week ago, meaning the 0-cent margin price is $1.88 this morning (factoring in a -4 cents fudge factor that emerges every year at this time). Since prices in town range from $1.99 to $2.16, I predict further retail price drops this week and no price hike. We got through Thursday with no price hike, and I thought we were safe, but on Friday, prices rose to $2.19, so the prediction was WRONG.
Month: November 2005
2:30PM: With the 0-cent margin price at $1.99 this afternoon, and with prices below $2 around town, a price hike on Tuesday or Wednesday to around $2.20 is pretty much guaranteed. Fill up tomorrow morning, I say. I filled up the next morning for around $2. By that afternoon, prices were $2.16, so the prediction was basically CORRECT.
Hello and Happy Holidays everyone!
It has been a long time since I’ve dispatched a hike warning e-mail
(October 16 was the last!)
I am looking for a gas price hike to 2.14 to 2.24 (probably right in
the middle, 2.19) either tomorrow (Tuesday) or Wednesday!
Fill up this evening, or tomorrow first thing!
1:00PM: Last week’s scattered price hike indicates that we can start using the NYMEX futures prices again with confidence. Since the price hike, the futures have dropped almost a dime a gallon, putting the 0-cent margin price at about $2 even today. With $2.07 on Alpine the lowest price right now, and an average around town of about $2.14, I could see them going either way tomorrow with a price hike. It depends on what happens on NYMEX this afternoon. If they rally this afternoon, then there should be a price hike tomorrow, to about $2.20. If NYMEX stays below $1.50, I don’t think we’ll have a price hike. You can see the NYMEX Gasoline price on CNBC. NYMEX prices didn’t get to $1.50, and in fact went lower, and then there was no price hike, so the prediction was CORRECT.
1:45PM: I’ve been doing about as well as a coin flip since late August, when Hurricane Katrina blew through. So, I apologize for being WRONG half the time, although I’m losing the Gas Game, too. So, what’s going on here? Wholesale and retail prices have been dropping like a stone since the end of September. I’ve heard that retailers are selling below cost, but they are waiting for Speedway/Marathon to hike prices first. Then there’s something I theorized back in May that is starting to look like a new rule to follow: Retailers are very impatient during uptrends in wholesale prices, but during downtrends, they are in no hurry to do price hikes, even if it means selling below cost. If anything, it is a clearance sale of merchandise they paid too much for.With futures prices down another 5 cents today, the price cuts can continue around town. But all that can turn around at any time. So, no prediction right now, enjoy the cheaper gas, but keep vigilant for an always-possible price hike.
There was a price hike, sort of. Speedway reset to $2.29, but in some parts of town and in Allendale, they took it back right away because the competition didn’t match the new price.