Diesel Fuel Prices & Trucking Industry

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The recent surge in the cost of heating oil, diesel fuel, and gasoline in the United States has had significant impact on many sectors of the U.S. economy, but most importantly it has had quite a devastating affect on the trucking industry. This is important due to the fact that nearly "70% of U.S. communities rely solely on trucking for their supplies" ("ATA" 23). If the government continues it's trend of non-intervention and refuses to place pressure on OPEC, the prices will continue to soar well over the two-dollar mark, and cause the trucking industry as a whole to shut down bringing the U.S. economy to a grinding halt. What is the reason that gasoline and fuel prices are so high? Most people believe it is because of OPEC raising the price of oil. This answer is only partially true. In fact, there are several others factors that must also be taken into account when determining the cause of high fuel prices in the United States and in other parts of the world. The main reason for the price increase is that OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) has decided to cut back on its oil production. What is the reason for this? Simply stated, OPEC knows that they have the United States under their control in terms of what price they want to sell crude oil to us at, and how much they want to ship. With the present economic prosperity in the U.S., it didn't take long for OPEC to seize the opportunity to make more money by cutting production of crude oil, and thus forcing consumers to pay more for fuel. Just how much higher are prices you ask? "Crude-oil prices in early March hit $34 a barrel, while a year earlier it was selling for $12 a barrel, which is nearly a 75% price increase since last year. This equates to an additional 48 cents a gallon" (Logistics Management 15). Another key cause to the price inflation issue is the extended period of bitterly cold weather that loomed in the northern and midwestern parts of the U.S. throughout the...
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