#Not this year.
#Gas prices are now close to their highest point since the pandemic prompted stay-at-home orders in #March. The average price of a gallon of regular gas stood at $2.25 on #Thursday, according to AAA, off only a penny from the nine-month highs reached last weekend but up 13 cents from a month ago.
“There’s tremendous confidence in the markets that at some point in 2021 that demand will rebound,” said #Tom #Kloza, chief oil market analyst for the #Oil #Price #Information #Service, which tracks gas prices at 140,000 US stations for AAA.
#Low prices for gasoline, and especially jet fuel, earlier in the year also prompted refiners to cut #North #American refining capacity by about 1.2 million barrels a day. #That capacity cut also helped to lift average gasoline prices.
The average price is still down 13% from the $2.53-a-gallon average
of a year ago. #But then the prices were going down, not up.
The $267 billion that drivers spent on gasoline this year was the lowest amount since 2004, and about $100 billion less than in 2019. #And the $2.18 average price for the year is the lowest since 2016, and the second lowest full-year average over the last 16 years.
#Even with the recent run-up in the average price, a bit more than a quarter of gas stations nationwide are selling gas for less than $2 a gallon.
#Kloza believes the markets might be getting a bit ahead of where demand will be in 2021. #He believes the shift of more people working from home and increased use of electric vehicles means that US oil consumption will never again reach the average of 9.3 million barrels it reached from 2016 through 2019.
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