Gasoline panic-buying has set in across much of the US, as a cyber attack on a major pipeline has caused petrol stations to run out of stock.
The Colonial pipeline, which is responsible for delivering 45% of the fuel consumed by the US East Coast and spans over 5,500 miles, was the subject of a ransom attack by a hacking group called DarkSide last week. The pipeline company anticipates to have the majority of the system operational by the end of the week, but that has not stopped panicked Americans from hoarding gasoline supplies.
Fuel supplies across the US are declining just as the country’s oil industry prepares for a strong rebound in summer travel. According to S&P’s Oil Price Information Service, more than 1,000 gas stations across a dozen states ran out of fuel, while the national average retail gasoline price jumped to $2.98 per gallon — the highest since 2014.
In an effort to bolster much needed fuel supplies, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration declared a state of emergency across 17 US states, while Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm asserted that the East Coast is not actually facing a “gasoline shortage” but rather a “supply crunch.” “We know that we have gasoline; we just have to get it to the right places,” she explained to reporters on Tuesday. She said there is no need for consumers to hoard gasoline, and compared the current phenomenon to “hoarding toilet paper at the beginning of the pandemic.”
Information for this briefing was found via S&P Oil Price Information Service. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.