Smoke and Mirrors

Related: InlandPolitics: More gas price manipulation: This time it’s creative!

Saturday, July 11, 2015 – 11:30 a.m.

California regulators and politicians talk a good game. Especially when constituents become heated over high gas prices.

Expect more of the same phony rhetoric this week over the latest manipulation by oil companies. In the end nothing will happen. Except maybe some campaign dough might get thrown around.

During the past 48-hours, Southern California unleaded retail gas prices have skyrocketed an average of 25-cents a gallon. It’s one of the sharpest spikes in state history.

For example, deep-discount detergent grade gasoline, sold by retailer Costco in San Bernardino, has climbed 18-cents per gallon since Thursday night.

The fraud in this latest ordeal?

The data, just like earlier this year, doesn’t come close to supporting another apparently fabricated gasoline shortage.

Based on today’s response in the media, this time driver’s seem to know they’re being duped.

Here’s the latest numbers from the worthless California Energy Commission posted on Wednesday:

California Energy Commission Weekly Fuels Watch Report

These numbers are based on reports from California refineries, and are subject to refinery revision and Energy Commission verification.

Charts of statewide and regional production and inventories, with five-year comparisons

California Weekly Refinery Production and Stocks Levels
(Thousands of Barrels)

07/03/201506/26/2015Percent
Change
One Year
Ago
Percent
Change
Refinery Input
Crude Oil11772116051.4%1058311.2%
Refinery Production
Motor Gasoline:
CARB RFG (incl. Non-Oxygenated)670062976.4%581915.1%
Non-California Gasoline9511118-14.9%71732.6%
Total Gasoline765174153.2%653617.1%
Jet Fuel: Kerosene2057170220.9%186110.5%
Distillates:
CARB-Diesel (< 15ppm Sulfur)181917007%104074.9%
Other Diesel Fuel*604867-30.3%1213-50.2%
Total Distillates24232567-5.6%22537.5%
Residual32218078.9%64403.1%
Refinery Stocks
Crude Oil15555147225.7%18030-13.7%
Motor Gasoline:
CARB RFG (incl. Non-Oxygenated)45034569-1.4%4555-1.1%
Non-California Gasoline12301391-11.6%11576.3%
Total Gasoline57335960-3.8%57120.4%
Gasoline Blending Components55425749-3.6%55130.5%
Jet Fuel: Kerosene-Naphtha28062960-5.2%232220.8%
Distillates:
CARB-Diesel ( <15ppm Sulfur)21372253-5.1%192011.3%
Other Diesel Fuel*113596617.5%1245-8.8%
Total Distillates327232191.6%31653.4%
Residual142414190.4%88960.2%

*Other diesel fuel includes EPA diesel and high sulfur diesel.

Negative values indicate a transfer of finished production being used as an input to production for another finished product. This typically occurs with high sulfur diesel being converted to a lower sulfur fuel.

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