(Image: Gorkie/Private Media)

Petrol prices are inexorably sneaking up on $2 a litre. If you fill your car with premium fuel you may have already experienced the curious mathematical phenomenon of watching the dollar dial spin twice as fast as the litres dial. Paying for fuel is an exercise in powerlessness. We do not control the global oil price, which is driven by factors far beyond Australia’s control.

(Image: petrolspy.com.au)

But as they say, it is an ill wind that blows nobody good. Some people are loving the current elevated oil prices. ExxonMobil stock price is up a hefty 25% this year, with the big Texas-based oil firm reporting a whopping profit of US$8.9 billion ($12.3 billion) in the three months of October, November and December 2021.

High oil prices are pure upside for oil companies. Their costs of production barely change, and when prices rise, say due to geopolitical instability or production limits set by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), they pocket the difference.