Cracking Down on Oil Market Manipulation

This coming Saturday will mark the one year anniversary of the creation by the Obama administration of the “Financial Fraud Enforcement Working Group” (see the MSNBC article from 4/21/2011 entitled “Obama says new task force will examine gas prices”, available on the web at http://on.msnbc.com/JdlbDx). The article referenced below (entitled “Cracking Down on Oil Market Manipulation”) is from the White House blog and is dated 4/17/2012.

While the notion that “high” gas prices result from “price gouging” by a cadre of unsavory and greedy oil companies, energy traders, and speculators makes for a provocative political narrative, it’s really bad economics. As canards go, this one is particularly favored by politicians; indeed (as you can see from the time-date stamps of the April 2011 MSNBC and April 2012 White House blog articles), you can almost set your watch on these kinds of things.

I wrote a blog posting about the economics of “high” gas prices on April 23, 2011 (source: http://blog.garven.com/2011/04/23/is-gas-price-gouging-to-blame-for-high-gas-prices), and many, if not most of the points I raised in that article are as applicable today as they were then (now the geopolitical risk du jour is Iran; back then it was Libya)…

 
Cracking Down on Oil Market Manipulation | The White House
www.whitehouse.gov

“President Obama announces a new series of steps to strengthen oversight over the energy markets.”

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