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Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sunday Night Futures

by Calculated Risk on 7/13/2014 10:10:00 PM

An update on funding the Highway Trust Fund from the WSJ: Officials From Both Parties Call for Congress to Consider Raising Gas Tax to Ensure More Stable Revenue for Roads

Some governors at their summer meeting here, both Democrats and Republicans, said Congress should consider increasing the gas tax to provide a more reliable revenue stream for the Highway Trust Fund. They also called for finding ways to ensure that electric and fuel-efficient vehicles help pay the costs of maintaining the nation's roads.

The trust fund is financed mostly by diesel and gasoline taxes that haven't increased since 1993 even as fuel economy has improved for most new vehicles, leaving the government without enough money to cover its share of spending on road repairs and highway construction.
At least this is supported by members of both parties at the state level, but this used to be supported by Congress and Republican Presidents too (read Reagan's comments when he raised the gasoline tax in 1982).  Oh well ... I expect a bill to be passed again, but only a short term bill. 

Next year (a non-election year) is shaping up to be very ugly politically.

Schedule for Week of July 13th

From CNBC: Pre-Market Data and Bloomberg futures: the S&P futures are up 4 and DOW futures are up 33 (fair value).

Oil prices moved down the last week with WTI futures at $100.76 per barrel and Brent at $106.70 per barrel.

Below is a graph from for nationwide gasoline prices. Nationally prices are around $3.61 per gallon (about the same as a year ago).  If you click on "show crude oil prices", the graph displays oil prices for WTI, not Brent; gasoline prices in most of the U.S. are impacted more by Brent prices.

Orange County Historical Gas Price Charts Provided by