Drivers should get used to the price hike that took place at some Agassiz pumps on Wednesday evening.
While prices were below $1.23 last week and touched $1.19 by Dec. 10, they went up about eight cents a litre at some pumps, to around $1.27 late in the day on Dec. 11.
Petroleum analyst Dan McTeague told the Observer that $1.19 was close to the wholesale price that gas stations in the region were paying (about $1.16 per litre). In other words, those stations were just offering customers a good deal for a while.
“This does happen from time to time, when gas stations will offer fuel for pretty much the same price — taxes in — that they’re buying it for,” said McTeague, who is also the president of Canadians for Affordable Energy.
Since that’s not sustainable, he said, some stations started recouping their losses on Wednesday by restoring prices to include the typical 12 cent retailer margin.
“It’s not pleasant to have [prices spike] in one evening, but such is the way the market works,” he said.
The spike is here to stay for the foreseeable future, McTeague added.
“Gas prices across much of North America are remaining relatively stable,” he said. “I don’t think prices are going to be moving very much more than up or down a penny or two in the New Year.”