Gas Prices Are Going Up, Folks

Ever since that incredible summer of $4 gas, prices have been quietly creeping up again. In the next few weeks, they'll hit two-year highs.

Ever since that incredible summer of $4 gasoline ended, prices have been quietly creeping up again. Before the year is out, they're likely to hit their highest levels since 2008.

USA Todayreports:

Nationwide, a gallon of regular unleaded gas averaged $2.977 on Friday and more than $3 a gallon in 20 states. That's up nearly 10 cents the past week and 34 cents higher than December 2009, AAA spokesman Troy Green says.

Benchmark crude oil opens today at $88.37 a barrel. If crude crosses $90 for the first time since 2008 and continues to rise, as many industry experts forecast, the average price of regular unleaded could hit $3.15 or higher by year's end.

Gasoline is already at or near that in California, Connecticut, Maine, New York, Rhode Island and Washington.


Of course, compared to other countries, the price of gas here is still incredibly cheap, largely because our gas tax is so low. I'm actually an advocate of putting a $4 floor under gas prices with a variable tax, so we would have less driving and more money for infrastructure and public transportation projects, and people could better estimate the savings they would enjoy by buying a Leaf.