Responding to Syria Fears, Gasoline Prices … Do Nothing

The LA Times reports:

Southern California drivers are paying the highest pump prices for gasoline in 2½ years amid fears that prices could jump even further if the United States takes military action against Syria….Oil prices shot up this week after President Trump tweeted that missiles “will be coming” to Syria following allegations of a government chemical-weapons attack on a rebel-held Syrian town last weekend.

Hmmm. Gasoline prices always go up in California around this time of year as refineries switch to their summer blend.¹ Nationwide, there’s been a slow, steady rise in gasoline prices over the past couple of years, but no spike in the past month:

The price of oil doesn’t seem to have spiked either:

This probably shouldn’t come as a surprise since, as the Times story itself notes, Syria doesn’t have any oil. Striking Syria may or may not be a good idea, but I doubt it will have any serious effect on gasoline prices.

¹And as refineries mysteriously shut down for a month or two due to “unanticipated” problems.

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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