Is the party over? The average price of a gallon of gas has increased 8¢ in the past three weeks, a trend that is leading many experts to believe the happy decline and lower prices just may be at an end.
According to the latest statistics, the price of a gallon of regular-grade gas reached $2.10 on April 8, marking a 33¢ increase over the recent low on Feb. 19, which saw the price drop well below $2 a gallon across the nation. A new survey by Trilby Lundberg, a market research company, put the lowest average retail price for a gallon in Tulsa, OK, at $1.67, and the highest in Los Angeles at a depressing $2.80.
To some degree the upward bump in price is to be expected with the seasonal increased demand and an improved economy that sparked more car sales. And U.S. refiners are preparing summer-grade gas, which adds to costs, ahead of the deadline of May 1.
The negative impact could be felt beyond the “cost of doing business” for many route operators if the price continues to climb. It is estimated that decreased fuel prices accounted for an average savings of $550 per household in 2015. That was disposable income that went to other purchases, including entertainment, instead of into the gas tank.
UP AND UP: Gas prices are on the rise. The average cost for a gallon of regular-grade is now above $2. But it's still unknown if the increase is only a seasonal jump or long-term return to higher prices. Photo: Library of Congress