Thursday, May 22, 2008

Retail Gas Prices Make Another Weekly Record

The following are in no particular order of importance:

From "This Week in Petroleum":

The U.S. average retail price for regular gasoline climbed to another all-time high, going up 6.9 cents to 379.1 cents per gallon. This was the eighth consecutive week for the national average price to increase, with the cumulative change totaling 53.2 cents. All regions recorded price hikes, with the East Coast jumping by 8.2 cents (the most of any region) to 379.5 cents per gallon. The average price in Central Atlantic portion of the East Coast surged up by 9.5 cents to 382.4 cents per gallon, 74.2 cents above the price a year ago. The average price in the Midwest went up 6.3 cents to 379.9 cents per gallon. The average price in the Gulf Coast region was 368.9 cents per gallon, a jump of 7.3 cents. Increasing by 7.7 cents to 368.6 cents per gallon, the price in the Rocky Mountain region remained the lowest in the country but only by a mere three-tenths of a cent. Once again, the average price for the West Coast was the highest in the nation, moving up by 5 cents to 388.3 cents per gallon. The average price in California rose by 3.3 cents to 395.2 cents per gallon.

Here's a chart from the same report:

Let's combine that with the following data points:

Job growth is dropping, which is leading to

Increasing unemployment, which is leading to

Declining income, which is leading to

Declining sentiment and

Declining Confidence

What do you think is going to happen to personal spending over the summer if gas prices keep spiking?

What do you think this is going to do to consumer spending on non-gas items?