Gas Still Above $4 At Many Service Stations Despite Lower Oil Prices

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Gas prices in the area have been over $4 for a couple of weeks and, though drivers clearly aren’t happy about it, there has not been the outrage there was the last time gas went to $4 a gallon in 2008.

Consumer advocates have a number of theories about why drivers may be grumbling about prices, but don’t seem to be as angry as they did three years ago when they heckled oil company executives, cancelled travel plans and rebelled against fuel surcharges on their bills.

Jim Lardear of AAA says, for one thing, the sticker is less shocking.

“They were recently across that threshold, so this is not necessarily as new territory as it was before.”

Lardear says it’s not as easy to tag a villain as in 2008 when the price spike, right before the summer driving season, looked like pure oil company greed.

This time, the blame is being put on the commodities market.

Philadelphia’s consumer advocate Lance Haver says it’s harder to understand, but works pretty much the same way.

“The same people who crashed the economy by betting on bad mortgages are now betting on oil prices and simply greedy,” Haver said.

The good news is AAA is predicting gas prices will soon crest and begin going down.

So, are drivers less angry over gas prices now? Not necessarily.

Driver Kevin Dunnigan, who lives just outside Baltimore, says on a scale of 1 to 10, his anger over gas prices is at an 8. And he says he more outraged these days that when gas first hit $4 a gallon three years ago.

“Only because of our situation with where we are and who we’re fighting and the reason we’re fighting. They say the oil is a lot lower now per barrel. So why are our gas prices what they are when oil is going down?”

Dunnigan admits it’s tough to find a specific target for his anger, but he says he’s looking to the federal government to step in, perhaps tapping the nation’s oil reserves to give the motoring public a break on gas prices.

Reported by Pat Loeb and Mike DeNardo, KYW Newsradio

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One Comment

  1. badbirdz says:

    Every time I am at a gas station, the disdain of the customers is completely there. People are fed up, and when election time comes they are all going to be put out of office, President & Vice President too, I am looking forward to that day.

  2. grumpy says:

    So how is the investigation on gouging going?

  3. Tom says:

    The whole country is getting raped by greedy people in charge. There are a lot of alternate methods to relieve the price at the pump,but the goverment isnt interested!

  4. CC says:

    People, it’s apathy that is keeping the price up. Come on, lets collectively use our power as consumers. Search for the cheapest stations and fill up there only. if you don’t have the time or it’s out of the way, buy only a small amount to get you where you need to be. don’t fill up. until you are able to get to the lowest priced station, also, getting off your gas ass will help. do you live in the city or have a store nearby? walk to it. sure the price maybe a little higher at the mom and pop store then walmart…but i rather my money go to mom and pop then any large corp. now…Especially OPEC.

  5. Guess Who says:

    Drill, baby, drill!

    And not in Brazil.

  6. Nostromo says:

    True, ‘TyRed’, a new benchmark for what traffic will bear has been established. The ‘shock’ of four bucks a gallon’s not the same as when it peaked at around $4.20 back in mid-2008. When the price collapsed later that fall I was paying $1.47 for premium in Delaware and Maryland and slightly less in New Jersey.

    A British analyst characterized the spike in fuel prices as “Rockets going up; feathers coming down”. The new normal may settle at $3.50 as there’s still some consumer resistance at the $4.00 per gallon level.

  7. tyred says:

    The threshold and tolerance for “pain at the pump” is subtly increasing. Have you ever noticed that it’s pretty unpleasant when you first realize that a skunk has been nearby and then you gradually get accustomed to it and, while the aroma is still there, it’s not quite as bad as it was initially? A similar thing is going on here! There are several “skunks” involved in this situation and I’m pretty sure that one of them IS the government, so don’t count on them being of too much assistance. If the price spikes, it really stinks! When the prices come down a bit, we are relieved. When they stabilize for a time, we get used to it (complacent). When it goes up again a little bit, but not too sharply, it is a nuicanse. The overall trend for gasoline prices has been and will continue to be upward.

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