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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Consumers to get tagged
Refined commodity prices increase with positive economic news
Media release

Conception Bay South, NL, January 18, 2011- Newfoundland and Labradorians will again be getting tagged with higher energy prices this week as refined commodity prices have increased along with speculation that consumer demand will ramp up along with economic recovery. That news comes from George Murphy of the Consumer Group for Fair Gas Prices.

"As I predicted before last week's changes in pricing, I called the shot on what consumers could expect if the oil market trend kept pace with the positive economic news that was out there, we can now confirm that consumers will be feeling the pinch of the penny again this week", said Murphy. "I expect heating and stove oils to increase by 2.12 cents, diesel to increase by three cents a litre, and gasoline by the predicted 9/10ths of a cent on a litre. Again, all on speculators believing that consumers will still consume more as a result of the positive economic news out there in the markets. There's a strong belief out there that demand will remain up, and possibly increase from present levels.

Distillate fuel numbers up
"Distillate prices that would include diesel, heating and stove oils, as well as kerosene and other jet fuels are all up in price. It's my belief that consumers will get a double whammy here in the province as transportation costs begin to grow with the end result being costs handed back to consumers in the form of fuel surcharges. Just last week most major airlines south of the border increased charges on domestic fares. It's just a matter of time before the airlines do it here, all in spite of an increased Canadian dollar.

"If distillate fuel prices are up sharply, then we can also expect to see marine transportation fuel prices to also be up, meaning the possibility of increased charges and ticket prices to Marine Atlantic users. It's really time that the people of the province ask the federal government for stability in Marine Atlantic's rates so we won't have to see any increase to the price of consumer goods that come in via the Gulf of St. Lawrence route. If this an election year, the province should ask for extra money to be added to the budget of Marine Atlantic expressly for the purpose of keeping stable shipping rates to the crown corporation so consumers and business here doesn't have to deal with added costs associated with higher marine diesel or orimulsion prices."

Layton wants the HST off heat
The leader of the New Democratic Party of Canada, Mr. Jack Layton, is asking that the federal government to drop the federal component of HST off all forms of heat in the next budget, something for which the consumers in this province and Nova Scotia have spoken about loudly in the past. If the federal government removes their taxation component and the province removes theirs, adding up to a total of thirteen per cent taxes on heat, then it would go a long way to putting some disposable income back in to the hands of everyone.

Layton has also asked for the feds to reinstate the home retrofit programs of the past that could be used as an economic recovery and environmentally sound means of energy conservation.
For more information, contact;
George Murphy
Group researcher/Member
Consumer Group for Fair Gas Prices

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