The oil empire that is ExxonMobil generated $39.5 Billion in profits in 2006 by providing to us the one thing we need most, good old-fashioned oil. A big reason for what amounts to the largest profit ever in U.S. history is the $3 per gallon gasoline that ruined our love for SUVs and trucks last year. Gas prices fell towards the end of the year, but ExxonMobil had already made its money by that point.
Many lawmakers want to heavily tax ExxonMobil for being too wealthy, but the oil guys point out that they spend a lot of money finding more oil so they can keep the crude coming. As it turns out, it's more expensive to drill a mile deep in the middle of the ocean than it is to poke a straw in the Saudi Arabian desert. Yeah, they're buying back a lot of stock too, but at least they're giving us the energy we need whenever we need it, which is better than the alternative.

[Source: The Car Connection]

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