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Biden's gas prices woes

The Graphic Truth: Biden's gas price woes

Polls show US voters rank the economy as their No. 1 issue ahead of the Nov. 8 midterms. Many blame Democrats for today’s inflationary pressures despite a bid by the White House to dub increased prices at the pump as “Putin’s price hike.” But even before the Russian invasion of Ukraine sent global supply chains into a tizzy, Biden’s disapproval rating was way higher than he would’ve liked. We track the correlation between it and US gas prices since the beginning of the year.

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A Southern Electric gas bill and a gas stove burner as the UK government unveiled a package of reforms in the energy market.

Reuters

Hard Numbers: UK to foot energy bills, US gas prices stop falling, fiery protest in Japan, Oz gas project halted

6: Ahead of winter, the British government says it will pick up half the tab for businesses’ energy bills for six months starting Oct. 1. Increased government spending and debt, however, makes it trickier for the Bank of England to navigate its way out of soaring inflation.

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People run away during an anti-government protest, in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

Reuters

What We’re Watching: Uproar in Sierra Leone, falling US gas prices, Baltic states balk at China

Fracas in Freetown

Sierra Leone on Thursday declared a nationwide curfew and cut access to the internet by 95% amid deadly anti-government protests over inflation. Six cops and 21 civilians have been killed in the West African nation, where about half the population lives under the poverty line. Most Sierra Leonians are struggling to meet their basic needs due to high food and fuel prices, which have jumped 40% in recent months, mainly due to the effect of Russia’s war in Ukraine on global commodities. Such unrest is unusual in Sierra Leone, which has been relatively peaceful and politically stable since its civil war 20 years ago. More broadly, in recent weeks similar protests over the cost of living have also turned deadly across the continent in Ghana, Kenya, and South Africa. So far the demonstrations have yet to topple an African government, many of which are mired in debt and simply don’t have the cash to offer relief to their citizens. But if food and fuel prices continue to climb, so will levels of civilian desperation.

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Dutch farmers block food distribution sites with tractors in Woerden, Netherlands.

Robin Utrecht via Reuters

Hard Numbers: Dutch farmers roar, Biden offers Griner swap, EU gas prices soar, Teva’s opioid settlement, carnage in Haiti

24.6 billion: Dutch farmers resumed protests Wednesday over the government’s plan to rein in emissions produced by livestock, which they say will decimate the agriculture industry. The Netherlands has earmarked $24.6 billion to help reduce emissions, but the farming sector says it is being unfairly targeted while the aviation, construction, and other industries are getting off scot-free.

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Ari Winkleman

The Graphic Truth: Gasping at the pump – global gas prices soar ​

Prices at the pump are soaring. Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, much of the world has been affected by the economic impact of sanctions, higher inflation, constrained supply, and overall uncertainty. In the G20 economies, consumers tend to complain most about the price of unleaded gas, which is affecting their ability to get around town and go on holiday. We look at how far north the G20’s gas prices have driven.

Luisa Vieira

The Graphic Truth: What do Americans pay for in a gallon of gas?

US gas prices are hitting record levels due to a combination of Russia's war in Ukraine, supply chain snarls linked to China’s zero-COVID policy, and high demand coupled with low supply. Americans are not amused, and some are directing their anger at President Joe Biden, who's pulling every trick in the book to try to bring down oil prices. The thing is, crude is not the only thing you pay for at the pump. We take a look at the breakdown.

President Joe Biden speaks about gas prices at the White House.

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

What We're Watching: Biden's gas tax holiday plan, deadly quake in Afghanistan, Italy's Five Star party woes

Biden’s gas tax holiday fuels tepid response

In a bid to address rising gas prices at home, President Joe Biden on Wednesday called for a gas tax holiday that would lift federal taxes on gas and diesel for the next three months. The move aims to show that the White House is taking the plight of Americans seriously after gas prices topped a whopping $5 a gallon last week. But Congress is unlikely to approve the suspension. Even Democrats – including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – have canned the idea, saying that it is tokenistic because lifting federal taxes (18 cents per gallon) will barely move the needle, and that any small gains will be made by … oil companies. Critics also say that it won't have a significant impact on the base price of gas, with all taxes on average (state and federal) accounting for just 12% of the overall price. Indeed, this is the latest (desperate) attempt by the Biden administration to tackle the rising cost of living that is pummeling working-class Americans and contributing to his cratering poll numbers ahead of November’s midterm elections. The next step? In July, Biden will travel to Saudi Arabia to try and get Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to pump more oil.

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The stovetop.

Reuters

The tentacles of a global energy crisis

The global energy market has been volatile for months, but things got particularly dicey this week after Russia slashed natural gas supplies to Europe via the undersea Nord Stream pipeline. Moscow cut gas supplies to Germany by a whopping 60%, to Slovakia by 30%, and to Italy by 15%.

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