Conflicting info sends gas prices on wild ride
The line of cars waiting to gas up at the 96th and Meridian Shell station was backed up onto Meridian Street Thursday evening.
The station had the lowest gas price in town at $3.37 per gallon. Most other nearby prices were $3.79 and it was $3.88 for a gallon of unleaded at downtown and midtown locations.
"It's cheap. It's ridiculous," two gas customers told Eyewitness News.
People waited anywhere from 15-25 minutes. For some, the wait was too long - someone stalled out and had to be pushed into a parking space.
A couple from Kokomo called it "crazy." They decided to stop for gas on the way from Indianapolis because it's $.50 cheaper than back home.
"We'll take what we can get now," they said.
So why is this happening?
"There's a lot of variability in the gas market, because of conflicting information," University of Indianapolis professor Dr. Matthew Will said.
Will says gas companies see crude oil prices rising lately, but at the same time, they see there's more gasoline available because travel for the July 4 holiday wasn't as robust as expected.
"Some gas stations are thinking there's an abundance, I'm going to keep my gas prices down. Others see a shortage, I'm gonna put my prices up and they all look at each other and they haven't figured it out yet," he said.
Consumers are figuring out there are still some bargains, but saving money costs time.
Professor Will says prices will balance out in the next couple weeks - probably around $3.65, the national average.
By the end of the evening rush hour, the station at 96th and Meridian was already adjusting it's price - upward.