CNHI News Service

Opinion

February 26, 2013

EDITORIAL: Gasoline prices; Social medical's impact

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A price break -- in April

 

(The Norman, Okla., Transcript)

 A break in the gasoline price increase should come in April, oil analysts said. The March-April prices at the pump are expected to peak at between $3.80 and $4.10 per gallon before heading back down a few cents.

All of this comes as wholesale oil prices continue to drop. Crude oil prices fell about 2.5 percent this past week. That should be good news for consumers but the pump prices keep going up.

The spike comes as refiners begin to draw down on supplies as they change over from winter to more expensive summer blends. It’s also the time when refineries shut down for maintenance.

Gasoline has risen every day for 34 straight days since averaging $3.29 per gallon on Jan. 18. The average U.S. retail price for gasoline was $3.78 per gallon this week.

 

x x x x

 

 

 

Social media changes the equation

(The Free Press -- Mankato, Minn.)

Gedney can blame the government for its labeling faux pas. The U.S. Department of Agriculture defined the standards for pickles, including the “midget,” a pickle measuring 19 mm or fewer. So Gedney sells jars of midget pickles in some of its product lines.

Not for long.

A Rhode Island mom whose daughter is diagnosed with dwarfism took offense. After the woman blogged about the issue, made a YouTube video and contacted Gedney, the pickle company bit. It’s taking the “midget” label off its future products.

Gedney and other companies are listening closer to consumers who now have the power of social and electronic media to spread their dissatisfaction faster and farther than ever before. It’s like Ralph Nader to the nth power.

Businesses are responding quickly and publicly to criticism gone viral. Hasbro, the maker of Easy-Bake ovens, introduced “gender neutral” colors instead of only manufacturing pink and purple ovens after an online campaign about the issue. The change was prompted after a 13-year-old New Jersey girl took the company to task on behalf of her younger brother.

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