Today, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee are holding a hearing on oil speculation and its impact on high gas prices. This February, Forbes, using Goldman Sachs analysis, found that Wall Street speculation was adding more than $23 to the price of crude or as much as $0.56 per gallon at the pump. ExxonMobil’s CEO Rex Tillerson stated that there was no issue with supply in demand and cited Iran rhetoric and market response as reason for the run-up.
Checks and Balances Project Co-Director Matt Garrington had this to say on Leader Pelosi’s hearing:
It’s high time that Congress crack down on oil speculation and how it drives up the price at the pump. Leader Pelosi should be commended for taking on Big Oil and Wall Street on behalf of American families.
The American Petroleum Institute, Western Energy Alliance, and the politicians bought-and-paid-for by oil companies continue to lie to the public about the cause of high gas prices. Those accusations haven’t been able to survive the light of day. An Associated Press study showed that oil production has no effect on gas prices. In fact, some refineries are actually cutting back on production arguing that today’s high prices are not enough to make additional production profitable.
Four years ago we saw Wall Street’s greed decimate the housing market and our economy. When it comes to oil speculation, we need more accountability to prevent Wall Street gamblers from raising energy prices and hurting the pocketbooks of Americans.
Cracking down on Wall Street gamblers is an important step to addressing high energy costs.
Key facts regarding American oil production:
- U.S. oil production is at its highest level in eight years.
- Oil and gas drilling is at its highest level in more than 25 years, and oil drilling is at record levels.
- The U.S. is a net exporter of petroleum products.