What Does $5 a Gallon Gas Mean for the Average American?

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The idea of paying $5 a gallon for gas scares most Americans — at least the ones who don’t live in California, where AAA reports that the price per gallon for gas currently sits at $5.07. The $5 threshold seems like a big number especially when you look at what a gallon of gas cost in 2019, the year before the pandemic.

“U.S. regular retail gasoline prices averaged $2.60 per gallon (gal) in 2019, 11 cents/gal (4%) lower than in 2018. Gasoline prices rose steadily during the first quarter of the year, rising from $2.24 on January 7 to $2.90/gal on May 6, before gradually declining through the rest of the year,” according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. “Because the cost of crude oil accounts for about 52% of retail gasoline’s final cost, the price of gasoline generally follows movements in crude oil prices, which followed a similar price path during 2019.”





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