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Improving Market Factors Not Easing Pain At Pumps

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Statewide, gas prices appear to be dropping off a bit, but for many, the decrease is not enough. Many drivers are asking why the prices are still so high despite improving market factors.

Officials say barrel prices have gone down since last week and pipelines that bring gas to North Carolina are working at a better capacity than last week. However, some retailers claim the prices they are charging now are designed to make up for their losses from prior weeks.

"I wouldn't be surprised to see it start come down slowly," siad Gary Harris, of the N.C. Petroleum Marketing Association. "I think market trends are going to start driving prices down. I think when prices got to a $3.29 and $3.39 rate, everybody was calling me, saying, 'Why is everyone pricing like that?' The market has never been through anything like this and I think a lot of people didn't know where to price."

The N.C. Petroleum Marketing Association said there was no price-gouging going on at the pumps. They said the market factors are what drove the prices to rise.

Plus, another sign of change you may see at the pumps are stickers that say the listed price indicates only half of the total sales price. Some pumps are not configured to show prices over $3.