BOSTON — The national average price of gas in the United States surpassed $5 per gallon on June 9 for the first time ever, according to GasBuddy. This long-anticipated milestone comes behind months of gas price increases across the country, accelerated by the rise in seasonal demand amidst supply constraints borne out of the pandemic.
On June 9, AAA reported a national average gas price of $5.001 per gallon.
Gas prices have surged in recent weeks as U.S. gasoline inventories have fallen by more than 25 million barrels, or by more than 1 billion gallons, since the start of March amid a global decline in refining capacity due to the Covid-19 pandemic and accelerated demand going into the summer, said GasBuddy. The price of oil has also jumped due to escalations stemming from the Russian war on Ukraine, as countries choke off Russian oil supply via sanctions, pushing supply down at a time of rising demand. In addition, U.S. refining capacity has fallen by some 1 million barrels per day over the last three years. All of these factors have created an environment ripe for a surge in gas prices, while Americans balk at prices but continue filling up as demand has seen little decline.
Gas price records set in 2022:
- March 5: National average price of gas breaks $4 per gallon for the first time since 2008.
- March 7: National average price of gas breaks previous record; $4.10 per gallon.
- March 10: Average price of gasoline peaks at $4.35 per gallon.
- April 29: Average diesel prices reach new all-time high; $5.16 per gallon.
- May 5: March record broken; prices rise above $4.35 per gallon.
“It’s been one kink after another this year, and worst of all, demand doesn’t seem to be responding to the surge in gas prices, meaning there is a high probability that prices could go even higher in the weeks ahead,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “It’s a perfect storm of factors all aligning to create a rare environment of rapid price hikes. The situation could become even worse should there be any unexpected issues at the nation’s refineries or a major hurricane that impacts oil production or refineries this summer.”
Boston-based GasBuddy is a fuel savings platform providing North American drivers with ways to save money on gas. GasBuddy has delivered more than $3 billion in cumulative savings to its users through providing real-time gas price information at more than 150,000 stations, it said, offering cash back rewards on purchases with brand partners, and through the Pay with GasBuddy payments card that offers cents-off per gallon at gas stations across the United States. Acquired by PDI Software in 2021, GasBuddy’s publishing and software businesses enable fuel, convenience, QSR and CPG companies to shorten the distance between the fueling public and their brands.
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