Oil Markets Remain Volatile, Thanks To Russia, Ukraine, COVID

Patrick De Haan with Gas Buddy says it’s been a volatile month, thanks to a host of international issues. He noted that oil prices had dropped to around $93 per barrel last week, only to rocket up to $108 in Monday’s trade.

De Haan says while oil prices are moving higher, gasoline and diesel prices continue to decrease.

He adds it may take a little bit of time for prices to move higher, because of the lag not only in the up-side but the down-side in what we see at the local pump.

“There’s a little more margins that stations have right now because of how high prices go before they start to recede, and that gives stations time to slowly push discounts at the retail level. And that’s why even though oil prices are up considerably from a week ago, there’s still enough “padding” so to speak, that stations don’t have to send those higher prices long just yet.”

De Haan pointed out that if oil prices continue to advance, the price you pay at the pump may eventually move higher.

When it comes to the question of pump prices into the future, especially with the warmer weather and summer months not too far down the road, De Haan says it’s very hard to predict what consumers may face.

He says a host of headlines are causing the current volatility, making it difficult to see over just a couple of weeks.

“The European Union, for example, continues to mull over additional sanctions on Russia’s oil and gas sector, which could boost prices significantly, but from what I understand, sources have said that the EU is waiting to implement sanctions until after the French election. So, there could be further price implications down the road.”

DeHaan added the global economy is still in the midst of the pandemic, adding China has seen a big uptick in COVID cases, which lowered expected oil demand.

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