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From Mark Perry:

  • Each gallon of gas sold in 2010 generated … two … cents … of profits for Exxon.
  • Each gallon of gas sold in 2010 generated … forty-eight cents … of tax “revenues” for government.

By the way, this does not include the tax … on the profits of the oil companies. I’d remind you too that their margins are 8%. How many of you would take hundreds of billions of dollars, explore the deepest, most inhospitable places on the planet, manage to get a well dug a mile below the bottom of the sea, pump it up, transport it, refine it, and be cast as the most obscene villain in the history of capitalism to earn … 8 cents on the dollar of revenue generated?

What did the ancient Athenians think about oil company profits?

2 Responses to “Fun Facts to Know and Tell: Gasoline Profits Edition”

  1. Harry says:

    Being a long-time stockholder of ExxonMobil (I have an ExxonMobil hat on my rack, courtesy of the publishers of The Lamp), I have studied in much detail the annual reports of that company. For business and economics nerds it makes great reading.

    It may not be as exciting as an Apple annual report, but it is good business education.

    We learn that the company because of its good fortune is taxed heavily by the governments of the world, and has its property confiscated by tin pot dictators. In many parts of the world it takes heavy risks to produce crude oil and natural gas, and then after billions risked to do this, manages to refine and combine these materials into chemicals, gasoline, fuel oil, and other material that make the world run.

    All this costs billions a year, and it depends on which jurisdiction you happen to be operating in how they calculate net income before taxes.

    All of this is a mystery for the Senior Senator from New York and the President of the US, who confuse gross income from net income, and wish to tax every dime worldwide.

    Since I have not risked my life and fortune to drill an oil well and build a refinery to make fuel to heat my home in the winter and run my car, I am glad ExxonMobil is around. I would be less assured if Chuck Schumer, or his able staff, were in charge of financing the next well.

    OK, a well for bullshit. They could find a well that could produce.

  2. Rod says:

    The ancient Athenians went to war with the Spartans over oil, naturally. “No Athenian blood for oil!” — Zeno

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