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Biden directs FTC to investigate potential 'illegal conduct' by gas, oil companies as prices soar

High Gas Prices
Posted at 9:45 AM, Nov 17, 2021

President Joe Biden has called on the Federal Trade Commission to look into whether oil and gas companies are engaging in "illegal conduct" in setting high gas prices, according to USA Today and Reuters.

The outlets report that Biden sent a letter to FTC Chair Lina Khan Wednesday and directed the agency to look into whether oil companies were taking part in anti-competitive behavior.

"The bottom line is this: gasoline prices at the pump remain high, even though oil and gas companies' costs are declining," Biden wrote in the letter, according to USA Today. "The Federal Trade Commission has authority to consider whether illegal conduct is costing families at the pump. I believe you should do so immediately."

"I do not accept hard-working Americans paying more for gas because of anti-competitive or otherwise potentially illegal conduct," the letter continued, according to Reuters. "I therefore ask that the Commission further examine what is happening with oil and gas markets, and that you bring all of the Commission's tools to bear if you uncover any wrongdoing."

According to AAA, gas prices have been rising steadily in the past year. The current national average price for a gallon of gas is $3.41, up from an average of $2.12 a year ago.