A spike approacheth

We looked good for the weekend, with a stagnant market, and falling prices, but it looks like the falling prices at the pump are catching up with us. We didn’t move much again today, slightly up, but falling prices over the weekend have put us firmly in Spike territory. Expect the prices to go up in the next couple days.

Updated: October 24, 2011 — 8:13 pm

8 Comments

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  1. It will probably be today since gas prices in Rockford dropped 5 cents or so overnight. That’s my prediction!

  2. 10:15 a.m. Tuesday

    I’ve posted this before, but it is worth repeating: Speedway’s website updates with new prices at 10:47 a.m. ET. It is automated and consistent. If Speedway goes up in the morning (which is their normal time), you’ll find the new prices on their website at 10:47 a.m. If you hit their site right as it is updating, which I’ve done before, all the prices will read N/A.

    As of this moment, it does not appear Speedway is going up today, but sometimes the first stations are not reported by GasBuddies until as late as 10:30 a.m. ET. The current spike line suggests a new Michigan price of $3.499 to $3.559.

  3. Prices in Fort Wayne and area are still low as of writing this. Hanging around the upper $3.20s. It makes one wonder if demand has dropped significantly in the last month or two.

  4. 10:31 a.m. Wednesday

    $3.499 is Speedway’s new price today in Michigan. The first reports follow. Like last time, the first reports were out of the east side of the state. Most of the time, Kalamazoo is among the first locations with reports. Like every single other time that I can recall, the first report out of Grand Rapids was significantly later than the rest of the state and did not occur until after 11:00 (11:27 specifically):

    9:46 a.m. Elk Rapids, U.S. 31 near Fourth St. (this is significantly earlier from the rest, so it may have been user error)
    10:16 Hartland, Highland Rd. & Old U.S. 23
    10:17 Sterling Heights, E. 15 Mile & Ryan
    10:21 Ann Arbor, S. State St. & W. Ellsworth Rd.
    10:22 South Lyon, Pontiac Trl. & Nine Mile Rd.
    10:25 Fraser
    10:29 Flushing, W. Pierson & Elms Rd.
    10:31 Clarkston, Dixie Hwy. near Maybee Rd.
    10:31 Novi, Haggerty Rd.
    10:34 Novi, Novi Rd.
    10:34 Davison, Irish Rd. & Court St.
    10:38 Waterford
    10:39 Clare, S. Clare Ave. near E. Colonville Rd.
    10:39 Madison Heights, Dequindre & E. 14 Mile Rd.
    10:41 Richmond, Main St. & Lake Angela Dr.
    10:41 Flint, W. Bristol Rd. & Holiday Dr.
    10:42 Ypsilanti, W. Michigan Ave. & Hewitt Rd.
    10:43 Flint, Miller Rd. near I-75
    10:44 Portage, Westnedge at Kilgore <—– FIRST WEST MICHIGAN REPORT
    10:45 Kalamazoo, Westnedge at Denway
    10:45 East Lansing, W. Lake Lansing Rd. & Abbot Rd.
    10:47 Kalamazoo, Sprinkle Rd. near Wings Stadium
    10:49 Sterling Heights, Van Dyke Ave. & Constitution Blvd.
    10:50 Okemos, E. Grand River Ave. & Dobie Rd.
    10:52 Flint, Fenton Rd. & Hill Rd.
    10:53 Wayland
    10:54 Redford, W. 6 Mile Rd. & Beech Daly Rd.
    10:55 Ann Arbor, W. Stadium Blvd. & Arbordale Dr.
    10:55 Royal Oak, E. 12 Mile Rd. & Campbell Rd.
    10:56 Clinton Township, 18650 Hall Rd. & Romeo Plank Rd.
    10:56 Macomb, 18601 Hall Rd. & Romeo Plank Rd.
    10:59 Williamston, W. Grand River Ave. & Jackson St.
    10:59 Flint, Corunna Rd. & Elms Rd.
    11:00 Livonia, Plymouth Rd. & Farmington Rd.
    11:01 Parchment
    11:02 Westland, S. Merriman Rd. & Van Born Rd.
    11:02 Swartz Creek, Miller Rd. & Seymour Rd.
    11:05 Bay City, Westside Saginaw Rd. near I-75
    11:07 Flint, W. Miller Rd. & Dye Rd.
    11:08 Flint, S. Dort Hwy. & E. 2nd St.
    11:08 Burton, E. Bristol Rd. near Morrison St.
    11:08 Burton, S. Center Rd. & E. Court St.
    11:09 Burton, E. Bristol Rd. near S. Grand Traverse St.
    11:10 Saranac, N. Bridge St. & Church St.
    11:12 Lake Odessa, Saddlebag Rd. & M-50
    11:12 Lansing, E. Saginaw St. & E. Grand River Ave.
    11:16 White Lake, Highland Rd. & Village Dr.
    11:16 Mount Morris, N. Saginaw Rd. & Pinehurst Blvd.
    11:17 Dearborn Heights, Joy Rd. & N. Inkster Rd.
    11:17 Charlotte, Lansing St. & Tully Brown Dr.
    11:17 Portage, Milham
    11:17 Plymouth, S. Sheldon Rd. & Ann Arbor Rd. W.
    11:18 Canton, N. Lilley Rd. & Ford Rd.
    11:18 Canton, Ford Rd. & N. Canton Center Rd.
    11:24 Vassar, E. Huron & Goodrich St.
    11:24 Millington, N. State St. & Beckwith St.
    11:24 Oshtemo Township (Kalamazoo), Drake Rd.
    11:25 Traverse City, U.S. 31 N. & 4 Mile Rd.
    11:26 Oshtemo Township (Kalamazoo), Stadium Dr.
    11:26 Texas Township (Kalamazoo), 9th St.
    11:27 Wyoming, Burlingame Ave. SW & 36th St. SW <—– FIRST GRAND RAPIDS AREA REPORT
    11:29 Novi, Pontiac Tr. & Beck Rd.
    11:31 Pinconning, N. Huron Rd. near Joseph Dr.
    11:32 Howell, E. Grand River near Grand Oaks Dr.
    11:34 Royal Oak, Rochester Rd. & 12 Mile Rd.
    11:34 Battle Creek, E. Michigan Ave. & Pine Knoll Dr. <—– FIRST BATTLE CREEK AREA REPORT
    11:37 Berrien Springs <—– FIRST BERRIEN COUNTY REPORT

    *****

    Yes, demand has dropped significantly over the past two months. I'm sure you can find data on this from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) at http://www.eia.gov/ . Demand always drops after Labor Day when people are no longer on summer vacation. This is why every year (except 2010) there is an extended drop for about a month following Labor Day. Historically, gas prices bottom out for the year at Thanksgiving. Prices typically remain low until around Valentine's Day, but are a little higher after Thanksgiving as there is worldwide demand for heating oil, which is why the seasonal price peak for oil is in the winter.

    The fall drop and spring rise are built into the gasoline futures market months and years in advance:

    Gasoline for delivery in February 2012 is currently $2.6197. This is currently the lowest price for upcoming months. March 2012 is currently $2.6205. April 2012 futures are $2.7510, a 13.05¢ increase built into the market. This increase will change over time, but it is typically a 10-20¢ increase between these months.

    September 2012 gasoline futures (which affect August retail prices) are currently $2.6713. October 2012 futures settled at $2.5435 yesterday. This is a 12.78¢ decrease built into the market a year in advance.

    I think futures go out to 2019 or 2020, and there are similar fall and spring changes built in like this for every year.

  5. Meijer didn’t tweet or post to Facebook a gas price alert, but sent a text sometime before 11:49 a.m.

  6. Speedway instructs each of their stations individually (or so I imply) what prices to charge, leaving me to wonder how many people they have in there monitoring what other stations around the Speedway are doing. I have a feeling that the prices posted online are what corporate instructs Speedway to charge, and may not actually reflect the price at the pump.

  7. Michigan Governor Rick Snyder suggests the state replace its 19¢ per gallon gasoline tax with a percentage tax on the wholesale price of gas:

    http://wkzo.com/news/articles/2011/oct/27/lukewarm-reception-for-snyders-gas-tax-proposal/

    There was also something about him wanting to add $40/year to the annual vehicle registration fees for road repair and public transit.

    New York gasoline futures are up 9.06¢ this morning. New York December WTI crude oil is up $3.04 this morning to $93.24.

  8. I have never found a discrepancy between the prices on Speedway’s website and the price at the pump, except on the weekday mornings when they raise prices 9:30-10:30 and the website updates with the new prices at 10:47 a.m. On the days when the nearby competition does not go up, I’ve seen individual Speedway stations drop their prices around 1 or 2 p.m. and these new prices are quickly reflected on their website.

    Speedway’s “On-line Gas Price Promise” says they update their prices every 30 minutes and I believe it: http://www.speedway.com/FindUs/StoreLocator/GasPricePromise.aspx

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