Alltop, all the top stories
May 30, 2008

Save Water – Shower With a Friend


Well, this is not exactly the same thing, but how about saving gas by sharing rides. We’re not just talking kiddie carpool, this company is looking at the BIG picture.

pick up pal [pik-uhp-pal] – noun
a global eco-friendly transportation revolution that connects drivers, passengers, and packages
with the places they need to go.

Co-founder Eric DewHurst dropped into our site and provided some info:

I am the co-founder of a company providing Carpooling/Ridesharing on a global scale to help reduce costs and CO2 emissions. The idea is that we are mixing social networking with eBay like features to help individuals to leverage their personal vehicle to cut down on their carbon footprint. We are focussing on getting people to rideshare to events, (concerts, festivals, marathons, sporting events), where users have an affinity and would like to travel with people sharing the same interests.

and a link to an enlightening news article, ‘Buddy can you spare a ride?.’

t PickupPal is trying to raise the bar. For one, it has a slick look and nice feel. And like an eBay or Facebook, the site was designed to be globally reaching yet locally relevant, using Google Maps to provide driving routes.

“We’ve set up rides in Spain, the United Arab Emirates, Laos, Thailand,” says Stewart. “We really didn’t know what areas of the world were going to adopt this. Two weeks ago we launched in Australia and it’s become our second-busiest marketplace,” just passing the United States.

Canada remains on top and, within the country, Ontario and British Columbia have the highest concentration of users.

It’s not so much that PickupPal is such a new and radical idea, it’s just that the time (and price of gas) has never been more right.

Filed under:Energy,Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends,Gas price | by Pump Girl @ 6:24 pm | 

May 29, 2008

The Risk on Gasoline Prices


At Pumps, we try to monitor the range of forecasts on energy pricing. We emphasize how consumers might be able to interpret and use this news. Today’s article cites some of the concerns about rising prices and some fundamental analysis.

In the next few days we shall consider some alternative viewpoints, and suggest a strong consumer strategy.

The Risks

The rise in oil prices, even before the hurricane season, suggests a new plateau.

Goldman Sachs analysts fear a “superspike” to the range of $150- 200 per barrel.

“The possibility of $150-$200 per barrel seems increasingly likely over the next 6-24 months, though predicting the ultimate peak in oil prices as well as the remaining duration of the upcycle remains a major uncertainty,” Goldman said.

Goldman, which was one of the first to point to a triple digit oil price more than two years ago, said it believed the market was approaching the crunch in the “super-spike

In a similar vein, the Wall Street Journal noted the basic change in the balance between supply and demand. The article, Oil Exporters are Unable to Keep up with Demand, describes the problem as follows:

The world’s top oil producers are proving unable to put more barrels on thirsty world markets despite sky-high prices, a shift that defies traditional market logic and looks set to continue.

Fresh data from the U.S. Department of Energy show the amount of petroleum products shipped by the world’s top oil exporters fell 2.5% last year, despite a 57% increase in prices, a trend that appears to be holding true this year as well.


These fundamental considerations have influenced the forecasts of savvy market pros like T. Boone Pickens, who recently forecast oil at $150 and Sir Richard Branson, who sees $200 oil.

Next: An alternative viewpoint.

Filed under:Fuel Price Trends | by OldProf @ 10:57 pm | 

May 22, 2008

High Gas Prices Hit Automakers


We guess Ford Motor Co. learned its lesson. It dropped its goal of becoming profitable by 2009, and will cut production of trucks and SUVs for the rest of the year due to fast-rising gas prices.

Production cuts hurt automakers because the companies book the vehicles as ‘sold’ once they leave the factory.

“We all would like the basic business environment to not have deteriorated, but clearly the most important thing we can do for the long-term success of the Ford Motor Company is deal with this reality,” Ford President and Chief Executive Alan Mulally said in a conference call Thursday

Some analysts say the company is adequately responding to the challenging market.

GM said it would cut 2Q North American production by 5%. Chrysler has already cut North American production by 16% for the first 4 months of this year.

Filed under:Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends,Gas price,Vehicle News | by Pump Girl @ 8:09 pm | 

May 18, 2008

Ready for $7/gallon?


Analysts see a new plateau in fuel prices, with possible spikes. CNBC ran a series suggesting that current prices did not include a premium for hurricanes or other disasters.

Some analysts project gasoline prices of $7 to $10/gallon.

Thoughtful economic observers like James Hamilton attempt to separate the secular trend from speculation.

Meanwhile, many businesses are operating without much information, even when fuel costs represent one of their biggest threats.

Auto companies, airlines, and fleet managers are all scrambling to evaluate the threat. Is this really a surprise? The demand for fuel from developing countries is clear, US demand has remained relatively inelastic (so far) and supplies are not responding. It is time for a plan.

Filed under:Ask Jeff,Fleet Managers,Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends,Hedging | by OldProf @ 10:46 pm | 

May 15, 2008

$4 Gas Is A Bargain…


…certainly compared to gas prices
in other countries. Americans just don’t realize how we have been subsidized here.

American gasoline is also dirt-cheap compared with gas in other countries. British motorists are currently paying about $8.38 per gallon for gasoline. In Norway, a major oil exporter, drivers are paying $8.73. In 2007, out of the 32 industrialized countries surveyed by the International Energy Agency, only one (Mexico) had cheaper gasoline than the United States. Last year, drivers in Turkey were paying three times as much for their gasoline as Americans were. The IEA data also show that in India—where the per capita gross domestic product is about $2,700 (about 6 percent of the per capita GDP in the United States)—drivers have been paying more for their diesel fuel and gasoline than their American counterparts.

(Gasoline is also cheap compared with other essential fuels. A Starbucks venti latte costs the equivalent of $23 per gallon while Budweiser beer runs $11 per gallon.)

And here’s a good story. A fellow by the name of Steve Meisner bought a 1956 butter-yellow cadillac online. He could had had it shipped back to Germany from AZ right away, but decided to come to the US, pick it up, and go on a road trip to the Grand Canyon and a few other National Parks, as well as, Utah, Las Vegas and LA.

“This is adventure. This is cruising,” Meissner said recently as he shopped at a roadside stand on the popular south rim of the Grand Canyon. “Driving west with a ’56 Cadillac – that’s a dream.”

Like an increasing number of foreign travellers to the U.S., Meissner couldn’t resist taking advantage of the weak U.S. dollar and gas prices here.

“Our euro is so up, and gas is dirt cheap,” said the 45-year-old wedding photographer, who shipped the car to Germany after his adventure. “We pay $8 a gallon in Germany, so we enjoy pumping gas at three bucks a gallon.”


Filed under:Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends,Gas price | by Pump Girl @ 5:56 pm |