What will make gas prices come down? Villanova professor has eyes on 2 things

"I think some refineries are trying to make up for lost revenue," said Scott Jackson, visiting professor at Villanova University.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Since oil is globally traded, what happens across the world hits us in the wallet.

A Villanova University professor explained to Action News two things he has his eye on right now to determine what happens to prices at the pump: the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the war in Ukraine.

"If OPEC decided to ramp up production that will moderate prices. And certainly, the volatility in the market will subside if there is a resolution in Ukraine. No question whatsoever," said Scott Jackson, visiting professor at Villanova University.

The volatile market is ultimately keeping prices at the pump high, although we have seen a slight decline in the last few days.

"The effect of releasing oil from the reserve is having an effect not only in the U.S. but also other countries," said Jackson.

But for now, we are feeling the effects of the volatility in every direction it seems. Food costs more to buy and transport.

"In Pennsylvania, 96% of manufactured tonnage is transported by truck. Diesel costs are going into the prices of everything you find on the shelves. Eighty-eight percent of communities in Pennsylvania rely exclusively on trucks to transport their goods," said Rebecca Oyler, the president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association.

Flying costs more too.

On Tuesday, Delta announced a fare increase of $15 to $20 each way in the second quarter to make up for rising fuel costs.

"Their number one cost is fuel. And it's coming right from refineries. Unless they managed to negotiate before all this mess long-term contracts at lower costs, which Southwest (Airlines) did about 15 years ago," Jackson said.

Oil prices have come down in the last few days, but experts warn, we are nowhere near out of the woods.

"If there are escalations by (Vladimir) Putin in Ukraine militarily, you can throw all that out the window and expect oil prices to back up," said Jackson.

But why don't gas prices come down as quickly as they go up?

"I think some refineries are trying to make up for lost revenue. They may be trying to get some money," said Jackson.

He also says refineries actually lose money when the price of oil is too high.
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