Obsolete Boutique Fuels and Failure to Arbitrage

Lynne Kiesling Andy Morriss (Univ. of Alabama Law School) and Don Boudreaux (George Mason University) have an excellent op-ed in today’s Wall Street Journal, A Coca-Cola Solution to High Gas Prices. The punch line: environmental fuel formulation regulations balkanize wholesale fuel markets and make prices more volatile as a consequence. This is not a new … More Obsolete Boutique Fuels and Failure to Arbitrage

Can We Finally Get the Ethanol Mandate Monkey off of Our Backs?

Lynne Kiesling This summer, corn prices are high. Drought, extreme weather, and other factors combine to increase corn prices, and one of those factors is the federal ethanol mandate/renewable fuels requirement implemented over 20 years ago (as an oxygenate requirement) and extended in 2005. Roger Pielke Jr. points to a Purdue research paper that suggests … More Can We Finally Get the Ethanol Mandate Monkey off of Our Backs?

Better Red Than Dead, but Not Red Yet (on Solar Power)

In her New York Times Economix column Nancy Folbre recently said (“The Red Faces of the Solar Skeptics,” March 10, 2014): If the faces of renewable energy critics are not red yet, they soon will be. For years, these critics — of solar photovoltaics in particular — have called renewable energy a boutique fantasy. A recent Wall … More Better Red Than Dead, but Not Red Yet (on Solar Power)

Fundamentals of Spring Gasoline Price Increases

Lynne Kiesling The following is a post I wrote in March 2004 about the regular, annual, seasonal rise in gasoline prices that always occurs at this time of year. I am reposting it here because it generally still applies, and I am inserting some updated comments in bold below. Being systematic, here are the primary … More Fundamentals of Spring Gasoline Price IncreasesMore Fundamentals of Spring Gasoline Price Increases

Two New Reports on the Boutique Fuel Problem

Lynne Kiesling Last week while I was off philosophizing, the Federal Trade Commission released a new report on the factors that influence retail gasoline prices (hat tip to Todd Zywicki). The FTC watches retail gasoline prices carefully, and every spring like clockwork when prices go up and my Senator (that would be Dick Durbin) rails … More Two New Reports on the Boutique Fuel ProblemMore Two New Reports on the Boutique Fuel Problem

Barry Posner On Refinery Capacity

In a comment on one of my gasoline posts below, Barry Posner made some great observations about refinery capacity that are so good that I’m going to pull them out and post them here. I have been abstracting from refinery capacity in recent discussions of gas price fluctuations, because it has been a constraint for … More Barry Posner On Refinery CapacityMore Barry Posner On Refinery Capacity

Virginia Postrel’s written a must-read Economic Scene column in today’s New York Times. Its topic is specialization, and specifically the move away from vertical integration in the structure of many industries. Technological change has contributed to making this move possible and profitable. There’s a large field in new institutional economics that explores precisely this dynamic. … More More

Virginia Postrel’s written a must-read Economic Scene column in today’s New York Times. Its topic is specialization, and specifically the move away from vertical integration in the structure of many industries. Technological change has contributed to making this move possible and profitable. There’s a large field in new institutional economics that explores precisely this dynamic. … More More

Virginia Postrel’s written a must-read Economic Scene column in today’s New York Times. Its topic is specialization, and specifically the move away from vertical integration in the structure of many industries. Technological change has contributed to making this move possible and profitable. There’s a large field in new institutional economics that explores precisely this dynamic. … More More

Why Do We Get The Short End Of The Stick?

Because no one in the Midwest (or anywhere else, for that matter) wants a refinery built next to them. Plus we have oxygenated fuel requirements, reformulated gasoline requirements, and some of us have state-level boutique fuel requirements. So gas prices in the Midwest are the most volatile in the whole country. See, for example, this … More Why Do We Get The Short End Of The Stick?More Why Do We Get The Short End Of The Stick?