News shown out over the highway in big glowing numbers – 3.289, a number lower than anyone had seen in a while. That was the price per gallon of gasoline the last time the little purple car was filled up and piloted back down the highway. A few months earlier it was 3.929 at the same station, about 20% higher or $7.68 over a tankful. How can that possibly be?
Many things go into the price of gasoline, but the most important is the cost for crude oil. Something around 60% of the cost at the pump is the raw material that fuels our lives, the rest being more or less fixed costs in refining, transportation, taxes, and profit. It’s the price of oil that is notoriously volatile, driving the changes at the pump. And something is about to be done about it, too.