Spurred by the request from eight governors of Midwestern and Western states, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will investigate reports of price fixing after Hurricane Katrina drove up fuel prices three weeks ago. What's not clear is whether this is centered on the spike to $3.00-3.50/gallon that most of the country saw, or the localized instances of prices over $5/gallon. With prices on the wholesale futures market climbing over $3 at one point (among other reasons), I wouldn't recommend that anyone hold their breath while waiting for the FTC to come back with a report that's critical of the petroleum industry.

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