Gov. Doyle: Statement of Governor Doyle on British Petroleum Price-Fixing Scheme

Today the Associated Press reported that British Petroleum (BP) is being charged with illegally manipulating propane prices.  The Commodity Futures Trading Commission said Wednesday that British Petroleum traders – with the consent of senior management – “purchased enormous quantities of propane to establish a dominant” position in the market and then withheld fuel in order to drive prices higher.

Governor Doyle made the following statement:

“For months, the big oil companies have maintained that the rise in gas prices has been the result of market forces beyond their control.  When my administration issued subpoenas to the executives, they came to Wisconsin, under oath, and claimed that they never manipulated prices.

“But now, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has revealed that British Petroleum bought enormous quantities of propane and then withheld it from the market in a deliberate effort to drive up the price – and they succeeded.  As a result of this scheme by BP, the price increased by more than 40 percent.  Average, middle class families in Wisconsin got soaked, while executives at BP got even richer.

“I wish I could say I was surprised by this news, but this is exactly the kind of this we have suspected all along.  This kind of behavior is outrageous – and it is precisely why Congress needs to take action on my call to cap oil company profits and give a refund to American consumers.”

Listen to Governor Doyle talk about British Petroleum: