Spanish drivers are now paying higher fuel costs than ever before. This Friday's average gasoline price was 2.13 euros per liter and diesel at 2.10 euros. These record prices are a serious blow to millions of drivers, despite the 20 cents per gallon bonus from the Government. Cani Fernandez (president of the National Commission for Markets and Competition - CNMC), assured that Friday's discount was working and that gas stations are not absorbing the aid. She said that only 1% of pumps have experienced "anomalous circumstances".
Fernandez explained that competition closely follows the evolution of gas station margins. He was able to determine that there has been no "absorption effect", and that the discount is not being used as a means of reducing prices. Fernandez stated that margins were contained and have declined significantly in many service stations during his speech at the Association of Economic Information Journalists' (APIE) summer courses.
This was after monitoring 12,620 service stations across the country with "a high frequency indicator" on pricing. It takes into consideration, among other things, prices in international market or registered prices within the last day, and compares them with the previous year. He explained that "we have not detected anomalous circumstances that reach a hundred gasoline stations out of 12,220."
Fernandez stated that there has been an increase in gross margins in operators' operations, but this is due to an "important increase in costs they must face" because of environmental obligations. Fernandez also pointed out that the comparison of European countries is flawed because Spain reports the price as monoliths (costs of production), and the final consumer price for other countries.
Fernandez, on the other hand, confirmed that the CNMC was "about" to settle the sanctioning file against Sabadell Banco Santander CaixaBank, Bankia and CaixaBank for anti-competitive marketing practices of credit guarantees guaranteed by the Official Credit Institute. Competition is looking into the possible link between different products required by banks to allow customers to access guarantee lines approved by the Government in 2020. This was to provide liquidity and credit for businesses and individuals who are facing the economic consequences of the pandemic. He also analyzes how credit can be used to restructure financial debts.