FUEL: Gas business steady, but all eyes on Ukraine

Times Board of Economists - Report from Tom Collins, chief executive officer of Luke Oil
2014-05-04T00:00:00Z 2014-05-04T07:52:09Z FUEL: Gas business steady, but all eyes on UkraineJoseph S. Pete joseph.pete@nwi.com, (219) 933-3316 nwitimes.com

The fuel business is holding steady after rebounding from a slow start.

"The first quarter had some slow spots due to the weather," said Tom Collins Sr., Luke Oil CEO. "In Northwest Indiana, there were 12 days that anybody in retail suffered. But the second quarter always has kind of an uptick because people begin to drive more."

Sales in the second quarter were about the same as 2013, and usually pick up by 15 percent during the traditional driving season that begins on Memorial Day.

Gas prices should stay steady. But the geopolitical tensions in Ukraine could have an impact on gas prices, particularly if the United States and other western nations decide to impose sanctions on Russia, a major energy exporter.

"Everyone is closely watching the world crisis in the Ukraine, which could affect crude oil pricing across the world," he said. 

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