I am absolutely fed up with gasoline prices! I just filled up my 2007 Toyota Yaris and it cost me a whopping $43! Obviously I'm joking…gas prices are still not bothering me.
With the summer driving season approaching it will be interesting to see how high pump prices go. I always find it fascinating to read articles about truck and SUV sales vs. higher gasoline prices and whether or not the prices are affecting consumer behaviour. I am in the camp that believes that it will take significant appreciation in the price of petrol for North Americans to change behaviour by driving less, or opt for more fuel efficient vehicles. The migration to more fuel efficient vehicles may have already begun in earnest, however I do not believe the trend has gained any momentum as of yet.
What will it take for North Americans to adapt? I'm not sure. One thing that is interesting is how the Canadian dollar plays into the price of fuel in Canada. If the Canadian dollar was back even close to the levels it sat at years ago we would be in for significant pain at pumps compared with where we are at now. The reason for this is that our fuel marketers buy gasoline in U.S. dollars. So the price I paid today, which was about $1.10 / liter would have actually cost me closer to $1.35 if the Canadian dollar was back at $0.80 U.S. In that case my thirsty Yaris would have taken almost $53 worth of the smelly stuff….
Now if Petro Canada's (PCA) stock price would only perk up....