As Gas Spikes, Profit Scarce for Station Owners

Oil giants like Exxon hike prices, raise rents, covet every penny

By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff

Posted May 25, 2008 1:13 PM CDT

(Newser) – Feeling sorry for gas station owners might be more than the average consumer can muster these days, but, reports the Washington Post, the emotion might not be misguided. Oil giants like Exxon cut owners' profit margins and raise rents, while micromanaging details down to which shelf franchisees place soda on. If the owner raises the price per gallon a few pennies, Exxon spikes its wholesale price, leaving little room for earnings.

"Why is the government giving Exxon subsidies and tax breaks when they're making billions of dollars and when they squeeze every dime they can out of every dealer who made that profit for them?" asks one station owner.

An Exxon Mobil station in Williamsville, N.Y.
An Exxon Mobil station in Williamsville, N.Y.   (AP Photo/David Duprey)
An Exxon gas station sign in Dallas.
An Exxon gas station sign in Dallas.   (AP Photo/LM Otero, file)
Even as the price of gas at the pump climbs, station owners aren't seeing hefty profits, reports the Washington Post.
Even as the price of gas at the pump climbs, station owners aren't seeing hefty profits, reports the Washington Post.   (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)
A customer pumps gas at an Exxon station.
A customer pumps gas at an Exxon station.   (AP Photo/Lisa Poole)
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