Gas Prices

Sunday, July 19, 2015 – 10:00 a.m.

California wholesale gas prices have fallen about 50 cents a gallon in the past 48-hours. But don’t wait for pump prices to fall significantly anytime soon.

Pump prices at some Inland Empire gas stations dropped 2 cents per gallon overnight.

It’s called the second-half of the price gouge, and oil companies are raking in millions in excess profits.

With crude oil hovering at $50.78 per barrel, and with an long-term outlook of further price declines, California driver’s continue to get hosed. The fleecing is likely to continue for at least another month. While the price of crude oil has fallen over $10 a barrel in the past thirty days, California gas prices have done nothing but go up.

Here’s the latest storyline update:

  • The South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) will not allow the ExxonMobil Torrance Refinery resume full operations without a proper piece of emissions equipment the company says will “take time” to restore. Instead of sixty days, it could be six months. Currently the refinery is operating at 20% of capacity.
  • Tesoro has one of its refinery operations shutdown for “routine” maintenance in the middle of summer.
  • Crude oil supplies to refineries have dropped. Even though official state numbers don’t reflect any tangible shortage and the country is essentially awash in surplus supply.

The factors for the price gouging appear to be changing on a daily basis. On Friday, the California Energy Commission, the state’s so-called “regulator”, actually supported the oil company storyline.

According to Gasbuddy.com, the average per gallon price of regular unleaded in California is currently at $3.895, followed by Alaska at $3.437 and Hawaii at $3.315.

Yes, an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean has gasoline an average of 58 cents per gallon cheaper than California!