Since Monday, June 6, the national average gasoline price for a gallon of regular fuel has increased 12 cents to $5.004 on Saturday, while in California, prices have reached an average of $6.43 per gallon, the most expensive of the 9 states with the highest costs nationwide.
This is detailed in the Automobile Association of America (AAA) in its daily report of energy prices across the country. It details that gasoline demand rose from 8.98 million drums per day to 9.2 million as drivers continue to fuel up for the summer driving season, which is typically a time when demand for gasoline increases.
This dynamic between decreasing supply and increasing demand is contributing to higher prices at the pump. In addition, rising crude oil prices could mean that costs will continue to increase in the near future, reaching new records.
Notably, crude oil prices have risen this week in response to global supply concerns amid expected increases in demand, particularly as China emerges from blockades that reduced demand for crude.
In the case of California, things don't look any better with gas costs. The average of $6.43 per gallon is the highest in the entire country, reaching as high as $7.799 per gallon in Alpine County.
Statewide, the cost per gallon a year ago was $4.224, which has meant an increase of $2.2 in the last 12 months. In comparison to last month, the increase was almost 59 cents on the dollar, an unsustainable situation for many families in the Golden State.
San Mateo County is not far behind, the average cost per gallon is $6.636, 20 cents above the state average.
Added to this is the highest inflation rate recorded in the last 40 years, where the consumer price index soared 8.6 percent over 2021, the highest increase since December 1981, according to government data released Friday, June 10.
Rampant inflation in the U.S. is putting severe pressures on families, forcing them to pay much more for food, gasoline and rent, while reducing their ability to afford additional services or extra purchases.
The African-American and Latino communities are among the hardest hit, as a large portion of their income goes to primary basic needs.
Although analysts expect inflation to decrease by the end of this year, they do not foresee much difference, so the federal government has announced that it is seeking to implement measures to help citizens deal with the problem.
Americans already consider high inflation as the country's main problem, according to polls, where a majority disapprove of President Joseph Biden's economic management, all in the run-up to the mid-term elections.
"My Administration will continue to do everything possible to lower prices for the American people. Congress must also act with urgency. I call on Congress to pass a bill to reduce shipping costs this month and get it to my desk, so we can reduce the price of goods," Biden said in a statement earlier Friday.
In turn, he called on Congress to pass legislation to reduce costs for families, such as energy bills and prescription drugs.
He asserted that the deficit has reduced more under his tenure as president than at any time in history, "but if Congress would pass tax reform so that the wealthiest Americans and large corporations pay their fair share, we could further reduce this inflationary pressure."
He explained that the country is on track to produce a record amount of oil next year and is already working with the industry to accelerate this production.
However, he said, "it is also important that the oil, gas and refining industries in this country not use the challenge created by the war in Ukraine as a reason to make things worse for families with excessive profit taking or price increases."
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