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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Numbers up, but…

Media release

Conception Bay South, NL, July 10, 2012- Consumers in Newfoundland and Labrador will find prices moving upwards for heating, stove oils and diesel again this week, but gasoline? That’s a little harder to figure out this week. That’s according to George Murphy, group researcher with the Consumer Group for Fair Gas Prices.

The numbers

“Heating and stove oils show a modest increase of 1.2 cents a litre, while Diesel numbers are also up, but by 1.8 cents a litre. Gasoline is a little bit harder to figure out this week, even though my numbers are still showing an increase. Last week, gasoline was projected to increase by 3.4 cents, but the ‘actual’ turned out to be 1.0 cents a litre. This week shows another 2.1 cent a litre increase to my numbers, but if I take the difference between last week’s movement and the numbers for this week, consumers could see an added 4.5 cents a litre to prices this coming Thursday.” Murphy said. “The real truth probably lies somewhere in between. I still maintain my 2.1 cent a litre number. Nova Scotia prices did move up by last week’s predicted number of 3.4 cents a litre, which leads one to believe”.

Markets volatile

“Oil started this session at $87.66 US for West Texas Intermediate but showed a retreat late in the session to steady at $83.91 US at today’s market close. Brent crudes have also showed volatility in the last week with strategic increases and matched declines. It now sits at less than $99 US a barrel. Prices initially increased on word of a spreading offshore oil workers’ strike that since has been settled. Also add to this the fact that there is a lack of positive economic news out there, and that has played a big role in keeping oil prices lower. Look for present oil pricing to hold until more positive economic news becomes evident. Demand for most fuels, including gasoline, have remained static even though we’re deep into the summer driving and vacation season”.

Effects on the provincial treasury

“Oil may be lower, but the positive influence of lower prices has given some consumers some disposable income that they can play with, and people are generally positive to see prices for fuels drop back to something more affordable, even if they are still high. Government’s projected $124 US a barrel may not come true, but while the government may not be making the revenue from oil sales, they are still making some losses through higher gasoline taxes being collected. It’s not all bad for the government. I would also anticipate some of that money to be made back through the retail and tourism sectors as people look to spend their added disposable incomes”.

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For more information, contact;

George Murphy

Group researcher/Member

Consumer Group for Fair Gas Prices

Twitter: @GeorgeMurphyNDP

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