Fewer People Are Buying Cars And Joe Biden Is Going For Broke: Gas Price Watch

The price of a gallon of gas is going down slowly, but it's not enough for most people

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Illustration: Angelica Alzona (Shutterstock)

Good morning and happy Friday! We made it. I’m proud of us. It’s been a tough week, hasn’t it? It’s been pretty tough for gas prices, as well. They’ve been going down about a penny a day, which is something – but not really that much of *something*. The average price of a gallon of regular gasoline across the country now sits at $4.22.

There could be some help on the way in the form of President Joe Biden’s plan to tap into the strategic oil reserve – CNN is calling it a “go-big-or-go-home approach” and I definitely agree with that assessment. Biden is going for broke with this latest plan to release 180 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

“The staggering size of the release — more than triple the prior record, set just four months ago – is aimed at cushioning the loss of Russian oil sidelined since the invasion began.

“This is the mother-of-all SPR releases,” Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis at the Oil Price Information Service, told CNN.

Although the administration’s shock-and-awe campaign should help in the short term, it won’t make gas cheap again. In fact, industry experts warned that pump prices may very well set new records this spring and summer, although perhaps not as high as previously feared.

“We’re not going to see a collapse in oil markets,” Kloza said.”

“Kloza now sees the national average for regular gas maxing out at $4.50 a gallon this year, compared with his prior call for $4.75 a gallon.”

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These high prices are also impacting the types of cars us consumers are choosing to buy. Reuters reports first quarter car and light truck sales fell sharply when compared to just a year ago.

“J.D. Power and LMC Automotive forecast that January-March U.S. car and light truck sales will decline 18% from a year ago, and predict the annualized sales pace for March will slump to 12.7 million vehicles, down from 17.8 million a year ago”

“Consumer intentions to buy a new or used vehicle in the next six months have slumped in March for the second month in a row, and for used vehicles are at the lowest levels in 15 months, according to a survey released by the Conference Board this week.

Shortages of semiconductors and other supply chain bottlenecks have left U.S. dealers short of many popular vehicles.

At the same time, the job market is strong and demand for new trucks and sport utility vehicles, as well as electric vehicles, are so strong that average vehicle prices are still at near record levels around $47,000, Cox Automotive analysts said this week.”

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So, we can’t afford new cars – let’s take a look at something slightly more attainable to us common folk – today’s gas price winners and losers.

Image for article titled Fewer People Are Buying Cars And Joe Biden Is Going For Broke: Gas Price Watch
Graphic: AAA
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Here is where you can find the highest average gas prices in the country in order of highest price for a gallon regular:

  • California - $5.88 Regular | $6.09 Mid | $6.22 Premium | $6.41 Diesel
  • Nevada - $5.23 Regular | $5.47 Mid | $5.66 Premium | $5.34 Diesel
  • Hawaii - $5.21 Regular | $5.40 Mid | $5.64 Premium | $5.66 Diesel
  • Alaska - $4.74 Regular | $4.92 Mid | $5.12 Premium | $5.22 Diesel
  • Washington - $4.72 Regular | $4.96 Mid | $5.13 Premium | $5.57 Diesel

Here are the lowest average prices of gasoline in the country in order of lowest price per gallon of regular:

  • Missouri - $3.76 Regular | $4.03 Mid | $4.31 Premium | $4.73 Diesel
  • Kansas - $3.78 Regular | $4.04 Mid | $4.31 Premium | $4.78 Diesel
  • Oklahoma - $3.79 Regular | $4.09 Mid | $4.32 Premium | $4.75 Diesel
  • Arkansas - $3.80 Regular | $4.13 Mid | $4.42 Premium | $4.82 Diesel
  • Maryland - $3.80 Regular | $4.28 Mid | $4.54 Premium | $4.70 Diesel

See you all next week. Have fun this weekend. Make memories. Don’t get into too much trouble!