Archive for Saturday, May 18, 2013

Gas prices approach record highs

May 18, 2013


Let the grumbling at the pumps commence.

Just in time for Memorial Day weekend, gas prices have jumped by more than 50 cents the past two weeks in Kansas to $3.91 a gallon. Gas in Lawrence was seen at $3.89 a gallon as of Saturday.

Chief Oil Analyst for Tom Kloza said a “perfect storm” of events has caused the large price spike in the Midwest, about a 16 percent price increase in Kansas since May 1.

“This isn’t your normal run-of-the-mill gas spike,” he said. “It’s not crude- or demand-related. It’s purely on refinery operations, but it’s nothing collusive.”

Kloza broke down the anatomy of the spike.

He said that while crude oil production in the U.S. has reached its highest level since 1992, the amount processed this year dropped to its lowest levels since 1990, caused by higher-than-normal maintenance levels and the retooling of many refineries to more effectively process Canadian crude oil.

Then came recent unexpected problems at refineries in Illinois, Wyoming, Indiana and the HollyFrontier oil refinery in El Dorado, further driving down production.

“All of that coming in a three-week span created some panic and fear,” he said. “Nothing will drive up prices like something like that.”

Ask Minnesotans who are now paying $4.28 a gallon. Prices have breached the $4 mark in Iowa, Nebraska and North Dakota.

Gas prices could continue to rise in Kansas in the near future and even approach the record state gas price average of $3.96 set in June 2008.

But Kloza did say the spike would likely begin to subside by mid-June once maintenance and repairs are completed at the various plants.

“I would suspect whatever you pay next week, you are going to pay substantially less when you get to the summer driving season.”

This is good news for area residents with summer plans.

“It really has affected me in all ways,” Justin Ballock, of Eudora. “I’ve cut back on trips to the lake.”

Ballock hopes that once gas prices fall, he can make it out to Clinton Lake and dust off his jet ski.

“They’re fun but expensive,” he said.


Tony Kisner 5 years ago

What with Obama and his oil buddies. Oh sorry Bush and his oil buddies..... forgot the party talking points.

elliottaw 5 years ago

It's a free market the government has no control over the oil prices, they are set by OPEC

tomatogrower 5 years ago

They are no longer set by OPEC. Much of our oil is domestic now. It's set by our own oil companies who could care less about your bottom line; they just want more money.

elliottaw 5 years ago

OPEC does not "set" oil prices. OPEC manipulates the free market price of crude oil by setting caps on the oil production of its member countries. Twice each year, ministers from each OPEC country meet in Vienna, Austria to review the status of the international oil market and to forecast the future oil demands in order to agree upon an appropriate crude oil production level.

tomatogrower 5 years ago

And yet, these recent price increases did not correspond with crude oil increases. Why don't we start looking at our own American oil companies? What will their profits be this year? Is it gouging, yes. But they make sure they don't raise it too much.

bunnyhawk 5 years ago

And they push the price of gas as high as they can every single year at this time!

Currahee 5 years ago

This has nothing to do with politics. Gas prices are rising because refineries are closing.

skull 5 years ago

No parties involved, just the annual "maintaining" of record high profits.

Mike1949 5 years ago

The problem is, we are in a recession (don't care what the experts say, they are just saying what they are paid to say!) that will shut down this country!

And no, Obama has nothing to do with this. Until our government reinstate price controls, we the people will be at the mercy if investors.

shorttrees 5 years ago

I cry BS on this, and wish that the local reporters would actually dig for the meat of a story rather than taking the word of a single source.

If it's because of problems at refineries in Wyoming, Illinois and Indiana (as well as the Kansas one in El Dorado), why does Wyoming have some of the cheapest prices in the U.S., and why are prices overall cheaper in Indiana and most of Illinois than here?? Why does Lawrence seem to maintain some of the most expensive prices in the state, as an average running 15-20 cents above those in Topeka? Keep in mind we can all check these prices at the website run by the source quoted in this story.

Astrunk 5 years ago

HollyFrontier had reported issues with their Cheyenne refinery as well this week.

Alceste 5 years ago

Oh. The horror. 55mph on K-10. The horror. Let Alceste know kt starts.....

riverdrifter 5 years ago

EVERYthing is the president's fault. We get it.

irvan moore 5 years ago

the part I find interesting is that gas goes up 10 or 12 cents a gallon at a time and comes down 2 or 3 cents at a time

riverdrifter 5 years ago

This is big oil manipulation. Nothing to with supply and demand. "It’s purely on refinery operations, but it’s nothing collusive" What turnip truck did this guy fall off of?!

kernal 5 years ago

Just be glad we still aren't paying what Europeans have to pay these days.

Bike 5 years ago

The difference is the European prices are high because of taxes - money that goes into public coffers, paying for things like public transportation, low sales tax, health care. Here it goes for private jets, islands, estates.

kernal 5 years ago

That's our own fault, Bike. The silent majority needs to get better informed and loud.

Tyson Travis 5 years ago

Paid $3.139 at Wally World in S.Central Ark for a fill-up yesterday, including their store credit card discount. I think it's up about 10¢ only in the past week, nothing like what Lawrence is seeing.

Frederic Gutknecht IV 5 years ago

I pulled up to the pump. I got rear-ended. My tank was filled up but it all ended...up on the ground...then ALL ground the conflagration...of broken rules.

lionheart72661 5 years ago

Kinda strange since crude was on the decline and just now has gone up by a small margin. All it boils down to is corporate greed!

Chris Beilman 5 years ago

Gas spikes right through the farm belt during planting season .... hummmm !!! No wonder our food prices keep going up. Intentional ???

tomatogrower 5 years ago

And it's just a coincidence that prices go up before Memorial Day, when many people travel? Riiiight.

smileydog 5 years ago

Obama's "Peoples Car," the $45,000 Chevy Revolt makes me laugh when I see the gas prices inflate.

Ron Holzwarth 5 years ago

clipped from:

Second Year in a Row
Pundits can say what they want about the Chevy Volt (and a lot of it is ***), but the fact is, those who bought them and are actually driving them seem to be quite satisfied. Every year, the very independent consumer watchdog Consumer Reports asks its members to fill a survey about various products, including their vehicles, and one of the questions is: "Would you get the same vehicle if you had to do it all over again?" This goes straight to the heart of the matter, and for two years in a row, the Chevrolet Volt has topped this ranking, this year with 92% owner satisfaction.

Armstrong 5 years ago

What's all the worry. Barry has a green plan, remember he's been selling it to us the last 5 years. Who needs gas.

tomatogrower 5 years ago

There you go defending corporate America again. Heil Money.

Armstrong 5 years ago

Why is there no outrage at Barry ? He promised, didn't deliver ( big surprise ) and nobody is calling him out. Wait I know - but he cares

Tammy Copp-Barta 5 years ago

It's ridiculous they can jack the gas prices up for graduation and holiday weekends like that. Thought they want people to travel more and keep boosting the economy!! Can't very well do that if I have to spend so much on gas .. guess I'll just stay home and save my gas to get to work this week ...

tomatogrower 5 years ago

Gas companies are a monopoly, but with little or no regulation, like utilities. We have created a world dependent on oil, but we allow the oil people to set the prices. They raise prices, make excuses, then report record high profits, but there's nothing we can do, because we need their oil. And they always make sure they don't raise the prices too high, to cause a rebellion and calls for government take over. And the sad thing is, they actually get government welfare in subsidies. What a scam.

melott 5 years ago

Ever notice how the Lawrence gas prices all jump at once on Friday after the dealers have their weekly lunch? No, no price fixing involved....

Armstrong 5 years ago

There is no more $change we can believe in - it's all going to fill our gas tanks.

jhawkinsf 5 years ago

I ride my bicycle past the gas stations all the time, seeing gas prices soar. I'm seldom outraged though.

Paver 5 years ago

I wonder how much of this could be buffered if there weren't 30+ mandated blends of gasoline being used throughout the country. I still call shenanigans but can't help but think all the different blends set the table for these issues.

Shane Garrett 5 years ago

The facts are facts and it is all George Bush's fault. Obama is supporting electric cars, therefore gas companies are having to make their huge profits now, before they go extinct. Come on people, the Tesla only cost around 65,000.00. Wait a year and buy a used one for 45. I know I have that much cash lying around since there is little else to invest in. Oh, wait... the tax man got it all. Never mind.

tomatogrower 5 years ago

Presidents, Republican or Democrat have no control over gasoline prices. Quit trying to distract people from the real rip offs.

Shane Garrett 5 years ago

Distraction of people should not be this easy. (If that is what you actually thought I was trying to do).

thebigspoon 5 years ago

$3.23 in Tampa Bay Florida over the past weekend...

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