Maybe you’ll want to start salting away money for 2012 fuel costs now. Get ready to see $4-a-gallon gasoline in various parts of the U.S. sometime this spring, according to one prediction. Another prediction says that some of the nation’s biggest cities — such as Chicago, Los Angeles and New York — will see record Memorial Day averages of $4.55 to $4.95 for a gallon of regular gasoline.Right now in Southern California gas prices are pushing toward $3.80 after being down in the $3.50's for awhile. $4+ a gallon gas will effectively put the brakes on any recovery that might be underway and cause a lot more pain at all levels of the economy. You can expect higher prices for just about everything.
The predictions come from two sources. One is the Oil Price Information Service in New Jersey, which provides the daily averages for the AAA Fuel Gauge Report, using retail receipts from more than 100,000 retail outlets across the U.S.
The other is the annual price outlook from GasBuddy.com, where 300,000 to 400,000 member motorists a day report and post online and through phone apps the highest and lowest local prices they see. There are more than 250 price-posting GasBuddy websites devoted to various towns and cities across the U.S. and Canada.
Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, is predicting a national average of $4.05 a gallon this spring, which would be just short of the Energy Department’s all-time inflation-adjusted record of $4.114 reached in the summer of 2008. California’s average would be higher, he said, adding that he didn’t expect it to hit the state’s record of $4.588 a gallon.
So here's a political question for you: Is it worth paying $4+ a gallon this summer and fall if it means Obama loses in November? I bet an Obama loss would have an immediate effect on the oil markets - all good.