Rising gasoline prices a sobering and sobering reality | News, Sports, Jobs
If you think you have less money in your wallet these days after stopping at the gas station, you would probably be right.
According to statistics compiled by AAA, gasoline prices last week were the highest nationally since October 2014. The national average for gasoline at that time was $ 3.22 per gallon for regular unleaded.
In Michigan, the folks at GasBuddy reported that the average price in the state was $ 3.34 per gallon. That price was over a dollar ($ 1.22 to be exact) more than what you would have paid for gasoline in October of last year, and 21.6 cents more than a gallon of gasoline in September.
In Alpena, the average price of gasoline was $ 3.29 per gallon two days ago.
I choose to write about gasoline prices every now and then every year because, unlike many things, few of us can escape putting gasoline in our vehicles.
For most people, it’s a necessity rather than a luxury, and more often than not, it’s a pretty good indicator of the state of the economy.
The difference in annual gasoline prices, for example, is alarming, especially for seniors who live on a fixed income.
Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, explained that at this time of year gas prices have started to drop from their summer highs.
This has not been the case so far this year, he said.
“Last week, oil prices hit their highest level in seven years, with one barrel of West Texas Intermediate crude above the critical level of $ 80 a barrel,” he said. “OPEC’s move sparked an immediate backlash in oil prices, and in the midst of what is turning into a global energy crisis, motorists are now spending over $ 400 million more on gasoline every day. than they were just over a year ago. “
This is a staggering figure.
And, yes, the higher prices certainly have an impact on the economy.
The Wall Street Journal reported this week that inflation in the United States is at its highest level in more than a decade. The Consumer Price Index – which measures the price of goods and services – rose 5.4% from September 2020, according to officials from the U.S. Department of Labor.
These statistics have definitely caught the attention of economists.
But you know if you’ve been out to eat recently or if you’ve gone shopping. You understand that burgers have often gotten smaller, but you’re paying more for them these days.
Demand for gasoline right now is high as motorists have returned to highways, perhaps in part to make up for time lost in being able to visit loved ones during the months of the coronavirus pandemic.
As long as this demand remains high, De Haan said, prices are likely to remain so too.
Meanwhile, you and I have to dig through our piggy banks for some extra coins to take with us on our next visit to the gas station.
It is a cruel and sobering reality.
Bill Speer recently retired as editor and editor of The News. He can be contacted at [email protected]