FTC Republicans Ask For Evidence In Gasoline Price Probe

On Tuesday two Republicans on the FTC asked the White House to disclose any “mounting evidence” of wrongdoing behind high retail gasoline prices after President Joe Biden urged the agency to dig deeper into possible “illegal conduct” in the market.

According to Reuters, FTC Commissioners Noah Phillips and Christine Wilson asked the administration to share the evidence “so that we might consider how to proceed.”

Last week, Biden told FTC Chair Lina Khan there was “mounting evidence of anti-consumer behavior by oil and gas companies” and he urged the commission to “further examine what is happening with oil and gas markets.”

Related: Biden Calls On FTC To Probe Gas Price Hikes

“I do not accept hard-working Americans paying more for gas because of anti-competitive or otherwise potentially illegal conduct,” Biden said in a letter to Khan.

The White House said in a statement that the price at the pump normally moves with the price of wholesale gasoline.”But recently there has been a split where the price of refined gas is going down but prices at the pump are going up. The split is now nearly 30 cents larger than its historical average,” a White House official said.

The two Republican commissioners said they shared the concern of all Americans about current gasoline prices, but noted the FTC had been asked to probe gasoline prices during previous administrations and found no evidence of collusion or other illegal behavior.

“The FTC has a long history of studying the oil and gas industries,” they wrote. “For example, our agency’s work has highlighted the fact that prices at the pump may not correlate immediately with the price of crude.”

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