May 14, 2011

Congressional Research Service - Ending oil subsidies won't affect gas prices

US Senator Harry Reid tapped the Congressional Research Service, or CRS, with a request for more information on "the extent to which proposed tax changes on the oil industry are likely to affect domestic gasoline prices." Their answer came back on May 11th, short and to the point:
"...there is little reason to believe that the price of oil, or gasoline, consumers face will increase."
And concerning the removal of a provision that permits the Big Five to expense their intangible drilling costs? Repealing that tax break
"will have no effect on current U.S. oil production, and hence no effect on current gasoline prices."
Regarding the Section 199 deductions - CRS explains that
"In the short-run it is unlikely that [greater dependence on foreign sourced oil] would occur…With current oil prices at, or near, $100 per barrel in the United States, it is unlikely that firms will slow production, or close wells."

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