Chart Of The Day: Gas Prices Are Heading Back Down

Jared Bernstein links to this chart at which does indeed seem to confirm that retail gasoline prices have peaked and are headed back down:

Of more interest, I think, is this chart showing prices over the past 18 months:

What this chart shows us is two-fold. First, that the run-up in prices we saw starting in January was pretty much identical to the one in 2011. Second, that the 2011 prices actually peaked at a slightly higher price than what we experienced this year.

FILED UNDER: Economics and Business,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. mantis says:

    Republicans have been telling us for months (years?) that the rise in gas prices is Obama’s fault. Does that mean he gets credit for falling gas prices too? Nah, they’ll probably credit President Gingrich.

  2. anjin-san says:

    It will be interesting to see how Republicans respond to this disaster.

  3. michael reynolds says:

    I’ll give ten bucks to charity for every story Fox does on falling gas prices.

  4. Ron Beasley says:

    The gasoline futures prices are down 30 cents from their high in March.

  5. MM says:

    @anjin-san: Somebody will spin this as “Increasing confidence in a Romney win”.

  6. James Joyner says:

    Clearly, this is a lag effect from something good Bush did. Or maybe even Ronald Reagan.

    I’ve noted this anecdotally as well. Prices are down nearly 20 cents from 2 weeks ago in the Alexandria VA area.

  7. Hey Norm says:


  8. J-Dub says:

    One problem seems to be that the floor keeps rising. Gone are the days of $1.85 gas. Now we consider ourselves lucky at $3.00. How long before $3.75 seems cheap?

  9. al-Ameda says:

    I think the over-riding reason for the short-term drop in prices is that the oil companies resumed maximum refining operations in order to benefit the Obama Administration.

    Okay, that concludes my conspiracy theory for the day.

  10. PJ says:


    It will be interesting to see how Republicans respond to this disaster.

    They’ll ignore it and find another X and Y for:

    A President has never been re-elected when X is Y. Obama IS DOOMED!

    Rinse and repeat.

  11. Racehorse says:

    Well, the gas companies got it above $3 now and they’re happy for now. It is below $4 a gallon
    and the public is apparently satisfied. Next year we go through the same thing with prices settling at $4.50 a gallon. Gas companies win, we lose every time.

  12. Ernieyeball says:

    Some one needs to make a note of Swami Racehorse’s prediction of $4.50/gal…next year.

    Like all psychics Mr. Horse doesn’t get too specific in his visions. That “next year” window is 9 to 21 months away.

  13. OzakHillbilly says:

    I blame Obama.