Two Different Takes On Gas Prices

You can either lose your mind and your perspective:

It’s not your imagination — gasoline prices in Canada should be a lot lower than they are right now.

That’s according to Benjamin Reitzes, an economist at Bank of Montreal, who said the price Canadians pay at the pump should be a lot lower than it currently is based on the plunging price of a barrel of crude.

Or you can cool your jets and the overheating planet.

The latest round of interest in prices at the pump originated with some analysis yesterday from Bank of Montreal senior economist Benjamin Reitzes. While standing by the gas pumps this past weekend, Reitzes got to thinking. And so he ran the numbers and produced an eloquent graph.

“Simply,” concludes Reitzes, “consumers don’t appear to be reaping the full benefit of lower oil prices.”

Cue outrage in the comments section. Though, amusingly, some turned on the whistleblower, asking why the report didn’t do a similar job on bank fees.

“Certainly I, too, am unreasonably enticed by low pump prices.”
Ditto.
So, why do people who know better have brains that work this way?

“Disproportionate obsession”

“For the several minutes that I stand at the pump, all I do is stare at the growing total on the meter — there is nothing else to do,” wrote Ariely in Psychology Today in 2008. Watching the tank fill was an up-close-and-personal experience. It was repeated daily or weekly. It gave him a false sense of its importance to his life.

5 responses to “Two Different Takes On Gas Prices

  1. I vote for expensive gas.
    Let the price remain at the ‘oil high’ price (eg. around $1.20-$1.35 / litre), with any difference between market and retail going to governments to fund specific and set programs like public transit, renewable programs and deficits, like they do in Europe.
    It’d be the quickest way to make us more financially viable on so many levels.

  2. The oil companies are working on “what the market will bear” in fixing their pump prices, not world oil prices, cost of production, etc. What better time for the new federal government to intervene with hefty carbon taxes. If there’s going to be “pump gravy” anyway, the feds might as well be raking it in.

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