Fair is fair. Especially after my going after the mass market yesterday.
For years, in fact as far back as I can remember, there has been the suspicion that gas prices in Bend were artificially high. Occasionally there would be a gas war, which only seemed to confirm it. I remember passing through Madras and realizing that prices were considerably cheaper.
There was some mumbo jumbo about 'transit points' or something.
Now, I do believe that gas stations make very little money, but still...they were playing a very dangerous game that is now going to come back and bite them.
Fred Meyer opens a gas station and suddenly prices drop .35, at a time of year when prices usually go up.
What I really hate about this is that it seems to confirm every stereotype about greedy locals; it seems to confirm that the mass market serves a purpose in keeping prices down.
I know, that whenever I had a monopoly, I was very careful not to charge more than the standard market price. Sometimes it didn't matter -- if the mass market got involved, they often would go below cost as loss leaders, because what attracted them to the product was its 'hotness'.
So, even though I would be bending over backward to be fair, I would still look bad.
In the case of the gas prices, however, it's very hard to see that the local gas prices weren't gouging us for years.
Oh on a perhaps related note: the gas station I have always gone to, on the corner of 8th and Greenwood, has been shuttered. Hmmmmm....
6 days ago