[OT] Gas companies report record profits (old energy thread)

Jeff Schroeder jeff at neobox.net
Mon Jan 30 11:06:38 MST 2006


Dennis wrote:

> A few argued against taking away the oil companies profit
> margin because they use that money to further invest in
> infrastructure that can deliver gas cheaper in the future.

While I believe they're using some of their profits to invest in new 
technology, always remember they're a business... and the reason 
they're in business is to make money.  It's a safe bet that ExxonMobil 
doesn't want to deliver cheaper gas to us lowly consumers because 
they're just a bunch of nice guys-- the only reason they want cheaper 
gas is so they can (1) undercut the competition, and (2) increase their 
profit margins.

I suspect a lot of that profit went into some handsome Christmas bonuses 
for the execs.  They're not about to hand that money back to us as a 
big "thanks for paying three bucks a gallon!"

That being said, I strongly disagree with the notion that the government 
should be able to set "windfall limits" on the profits of private 
corporations.  If companies are able to make a nice profit-- because 
the market supports the pricing of their product-- good for them.  
That's capitalism.  As a small business owner, I would hope that if I 
make record profits this quarter, I won't have to worry about some 
government "inspector" coming around and talking about taxing or 
capping my profits.  Luckily that whole discussion went away when gas 
prices dropped a bit.

$0.02,
Jeff
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