Oil companies have myriad excuses when gas prices at the pump follow the price of crude oil, but are mysteriously silent when gas prices don't fall with crude market. Experts now say that gas stations keep the prices high simply because they can.

We've all seen the news reports that gas stations raise prices at the slightest change in the world economic condition. Remember a couple years ago when an oil depot had a fire? I saw a report where one gas station jacked the price a dollar before the fire was out.

Experts, however, are quick to caution against violent overthrow of the local filling stations. Their profit margins are slimmer than for those who handle production behind the scenes. More money is being made at the trading and refining levels.

Oil prices have slumped 15 percent since the New Year, and experts say gas prices will follow.

[Source: Steve Hargreaves / CNNMoney.com]

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