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Sky High

   Once again we hear that gas prices have spiked to their highest levels ever in California. Gasoline in the Golden State now costs on average $4.67 per gallon, and as high as $6.65.

   I'm afraid I don't have much empathy for the Californian driver. Compared to Japan, $4.67 per gallon sounds like a bargain.

   The above picture was taken at my neighborhood "gasoline stand" (gas station) a few days ago. The prices listed are for cash purchases only and converted at today's (admittedly high) rate of 78 yen to the dollar come to:


Regular   $7.28 per gallon

Premium $7.81 per gallon

Diesel      $6.16 per gallon



With oil being traded in dollars, you'd think that would bring gasoline prices way down in Japan, but they have remained fairly constant over the years. I believe one reason for this is that since the stalling of Japan's nuclear reactors, the country has had to rely on oil and natural gas imports to fuel its power plants, thus increasing demand domestically and keeping prices high.

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