Friday, June 01, 2007

So What?:Reliance on foreign gasoline grows

JimVAT says, "So what?":
"Reliance on foreign gasoline is growing
U.S. refineries are unable to meet surge in demand

By BRETT CLANTON

As domestic refineries hit their limit and gasoline demand continues to rise, oil companies are importing more gasoline from beyond U.S. borders to keep America driving.

Gasoline shipped in from abroad now accounts for more than 11 percent of the total gasoline used in the U.S., roughly double the share of imports a decade ago, according to Energy Information Administration data."
And the most profound part of the article continues (emphasis mine):
After drivers used more gasoline than expected this spring, U.S. refineries, crippled by a spate of outages, could only do so much to boost output. And when oil companies searched for imports to fill the gap, they came up short. The foreign gasoline was heading to other countries that had problems.

That pushed U.S. prices higher.

"Actually, there wasn't enough gasoline to supply the world demand," said Doug MacIntyre, an Energy Information Administration analyst.
So we then see market forces in action (imagine that!):
"When you have prices here that are attractive enough for them, as they are now, then it attracts more imports and that stabilizes and eventually brings down prices," said Sheraz Mian
All I can say is Brett Clanton knows economics and gets it right. He should be the Houston Chronicle business columnist, not Loren Steffy.

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