Biden Warns Big Oil Over 'Outrageous' Profits: 'If They Don't Pass It, They're Going To Pay...'

Biden Warns Big Oil Over 'Outrageous' Profits: 'If They Don't Pass It, They're Going To Pay...'

President Joe Biden on Monday lambasted energy companies, saying that they had a responsibility to act beyond the interests of their executives and shareholders with the "historic" profits made from the recent surge in oil prices.

What Happened: Biden said oil companies have a responsibility to act in the interest of their consumers, and their community, and to invest in America by increasing production, refining capacity and lowering prices at the pump.

“If they don’t, they’re going to pay a higher tax on their excess profits and face other restrictions,” Biden said. “It’s time for these companies to stop war profiteering, meet their responsibilities to this country, and give the American people a break and still do very well.”

Why It Matters: Citing examples of Exxon Mobil Corp XOM and Shell PLC SHEL, Biden said six of the largest oil companies have made more than $100 billion in the last six months.

“One hundred billion in profits in ... less than 200 days. That’s not bad. I think it’s outrageous ... the size of the profit,” he said.

Exxon booked a third-quarter profit of $18.7 billion, excluding identified items, compared with $17.9 billion in the second quarter. Shell reported adjusted earnings of $9.5 billion along with an adjusted EBITDA of $21.5 billion.

Impact on Gas Price: Biden said if oil companies were making their average profits over the last 20 years “instead of the outrageous profits they’re making today and if they passed the rest on to the consumers, the price of gas would come down around an additional 50 cents.”

"Their excess profits are going back to their shareholders and to buying back their stock, so the executive pay is ... going to skyrocket," Biden said, adding that the public will "hear more" when "the Congress gets back."

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