June 23, 2022 |
President Joe Biden found someone else to blame for the record-high gas prices this summer: Gas stations.
Blaming gas stations is the latest target for his wrath as polls show his favorability rating plummeting and more. Americans putting the blame on his energy policies. The Biden administration first blamed Russia, calling the increase in prices this spring “the Putin tax hike,” even though prices had risen substantially prior to the war in Ukraine. Last month, Washington Democrats blamed big oil companies.
Actual, real-world gas station economics don’t support the president’s finger-pointing. According to the American Petroleum Institute, more than 60 percent of retail stations are owned by an individual or families who run the store under a franchise license. Most stations make operate on a slim margin of just pennies per gallon, which is why most operations offer fast food or other convenience items. The real money is inside the store.
For instance, the West Virginia Oil Marketers and Grocers Association estimates that the top markup in the gas retail sector is about 15 cents per gallon. After expenses, such as rent, utilities, freight, labor and credit card fees, a business owner is left with about two cents per gallon in net profit. Meanwhile, the food, pop, lottery ticket and other items sold inside the doors accounts for 30 percent of a station’s revenues and 70 percent of the store’s profit.
On the other hand, Biden campaigned in 2020 on the promise that he would end the “ability for the oil industry to drill.” His policies reflected that promise since his first day in office.
While Biden was blaming gas station owners yesterday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell was testifying before a Senate panel looking into inflation and high gas prices. Powell’s testimony undermined the president’s claim that either small business people or Russia are to blame for the consumer pain at the pump.
Pictured above: Gas station in Rawlins on May 11, 2022. Photo by Cali O’Hare/Bigfoot 99.
A recent survey showed that only 11 percent of Americans blame Putin for high gas prices, while 52 percent blame the president’s policies.