Updated: Gas price watcher decries 'absurd and unjustified' hike - Macleans.ca

Updated: Gas price watcher decries ‘absurd and unjustified’ hike

TORONTO – Motorists in the Montreal region got a rude shock this morning when gasoline prices soared by about 13 cents a litre.


TORONTO – Higher gas prices have been jolting motorists in major Canadian centres and the shock has been particularly acute in Montreal, where prices have instantly soared by as much as 13 cents a litre.

That puts the price of regular in the Montreal area at just under $1.53 a litre, an increase of almost 20 cents since the start of summer.

Gasoline prices across southern and eastern Ontario also rose by about 3.4 cents at midnight, according to the website tomorrowsgaspricestoday.com. That puts the price of regular in the greater Toronto area at just under $1.37 a litre, and $1.34 in the Ottawa area.

At one downtown Montreal gas station, there were fewer motorists than usual filling up their tanks Wednesday morning.

“We’re being whacked,” said Jared Lang, who had to pay $1.51 a litre to fill up.

“I don’t even want to fill up my car. I put in maybe $10 to $15 at a time, hoping it goes down and I live with it.”

Lang recalled that when he started driving more than 20 years ago, he remembers paying about 40 cents a litre and he quipped: “It’s not like the minimum wage has gone up five times since then.”

He also said that he tries not to drive as much as possible in order to save money.

Lindsay, who would only give her first name, also said she doesn’t drive as much as she used to.

“There’s politics around it, there’s greed but personally all I can do is try and save myself,” she said as she tanked up her subcompact fuel-efficient Honda Fit. “I drive a car which saves on gas, I bought it specifically for that and I don’t drive when I don’t need to.”

Her last vehicle was a Honda Civic. She said her choice in cars wasn’t just about saving money: “It’s about the environment as well.”

Gas price watcher Dan McTeague says he can’t see a reason for the increase, other than a money grab, and his website calls the hike “absurd and unjustified.”

The increase prompted many drivers in the Toronto area to fill up before midnight, causing lineups of up to 30 vehicles long at some service stations.

It was a similar situation in Montreal where motorists also waited to fill up — only in that city, stations were already selling gas anywhere from $1.37 to $1.43 a litre.

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Updated: Gas price watcher decries ‘absurd and unjustified’ hike

  1. Same old same old……only the government has the power to stop this…… and they choose to do nothing…..as always.

    • The govt does nothing because it can’t. Oil prices aren’t set in Canada.

        • So now our Con govt is supposed to get into price fixing of private businesses?

          • There you go trying to put words in my mouth again. All I did was counter your claim that “[o]il prices aren’t set in Canada” by pointing out that the current, made-in-Canada retail price is presently not reflective of wholesale crude prices or any other market pressures.

            i.e. you were wrong in your assertion of the cause of the increase.

            However, given the impact price gouging by oil companies has on the economy generally and the average joe and jane in particular, setting some kind of profit cap would not be out of line with their anti-strike legislation (ending the postal strike and heading off strikes at Air Canada) for economic reasons and to protect us citizens.

            Or does that economic principle only apply when it creates an opportunity to stick it to unions?

          • Again, you’re just arguing for the sake of arguing…..you had no need to say anything at all. You just can’t help yourself.

            So I shut you up.

          • Let’s see if I have this right… when you present an argument to someone else’s comment and your argument is complete BS, the infallible God Emily is Pronouncing. But when I point out the huge gaping hole in your argument, I’m arguing for no good reason because the Great One already Pronounced and thus there cannot possibly be anything more to be said.

            Thanks for clearing that up, blowhard!


          • You never have cause to comment on my posts….you just can’t help yourself. It’s like a challenge to your manhood or some daft thing no matter how far out you have to stretch to pretend it’s an argument.

            Blowhard….yup, it suits you.

            Till next time…..Ciao

      • No options at all? Or just no options that would have much support?

        • The govt has nothing to do with it. The price of oil is set outside the country, and the price of gas at the pump is set by private business.

          There is no law requiring the price to be low or within your budget or ‘acceptable’ or anything else. They can charge what they like.

          • Yes, currently our government has nothing to do with setting market prices, other than some type of monitoring role related to detecting collusion.

            But I actually asked if there was anything our government could do. IIRC, Venezuelans pay an extremely low price for gasoline, and I’m fairly certain that isn’t happening due to market forces. If they can, why not us?

          • Subsidizing consumer gas prices?

            Why would we want to do that?

          • Kevin1111 started this thread by noting that the government is choosing to do nothing about the high cost of gas.

            You replied that there is nothing that the Canadian government could do about those costs.

            I questioned your assertion, and now we see that, indeed, there are options.

            I’m not making the case that the Canadian government should or should not do anything about those prices, only that it could if it chose to.

            You’d have to discuss the merits of such a subsidy with Kevin1111.

          • No, there is wishful thinking, [and pedantism] nothing more

          • Nice pronouncement.

  2. It’s not just the East – Alberta prices have gone up too. Ridiculous.

  3. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the “market” is setting the price.
    Pretty straightforward, actually.