Motorists across the U.S. are grappling with gasoline prices that are hitting new records almost every day, but the pain isn’t evenly distributed across the country. In just a few places, a gallon of regular fuel now costs as much as the federal minimum wage of $7.25.
According to GasBuddy, at least 15 gas stations have reached a painful threshold for gas station prices — all in California. Granted, California’s minimum wage is well above the federal minimum wage, with workers in the state earning at least $14 an hour, but paying $7.25 a gallon or more would still make up a significant portion of a typical salary.
On average, California drivers pay more for gas than drivers in any other state – average $6.19 per gallon As of June 1, the national average was $4.67 a gallon, according to AAA. That’s partly due to the state’s higher taxes to pay for infrastructure and other costs, but UC Berkeley economist Severin Borenstein also said “Mystery Gas Surcharge“—a price gap that cannot be fully explained by cost or other factors.
According to GasBuddy, as of June 1, 15 gas stations in California are charging more than $7.25:
- Furnace Creek Fuel at Furnace Creek CA-190: $8.55 per gallon
- Chevron, 31251 Goves Road, Essex: $8.29 per gallon
- Chevron at 901 Alameda Street, Los Angeles: $7.95 per gallon
- Chevron at 30811 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu: $7.79 per gallon
- Fort Dick Market at 6670 Lake Earl Dr., Crescent City: $7.70 per gallon
- Roy’s Gas at Amboy 87520: $7.69 per gallon
- Mobil at 8489 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles: $7.49 per gallon
- Shell, 900 North Hill Street, Los Angeles: $7.45 per gallon
- Chevron’s 51557 US-395 at Lee Vining: $7.39 per gallon
- Shell, 453 Main Street, Bridgeport: $7.39 per gallon
- Valero, 377 Main Street, Bridgeport: $7.35 per gallon
- Shell’s 125 Sharon Park Dr. in Menlo Park: $7.29 per gallon
- Mobil at 4349 Laurel Canyon Blvd. Studio City: $7.29 per gallon
- Shell 51424 US-395 at Lee Vining: $7.29 per gallon
- Mobil at 22 Vista Point Dr. in Lee Vining: $7.29 per gallon
Average gas prices surge as Americans return to work after Memorial Day weekend record $4.67That’s up from $4.18 a month ago and $3.04 a year earlier, according to AAA.
Elsewhere in the U.S., oil and gas price expert Patrick De Haan warns on Memorial Day tweet Gasoline prices are likely to continue to rise in the Great Lakes region and in Florida, where a gallon of regular gasoline already costs $4.69 in cities like Tallahassee and Palm Beach, according to GasBuddy.
Drivers spend more on gas
Americans have grown increasingly pessimistic about the economy amid fears of the highest inflation in 40 years and fears of a recession that have sent stocks tumbling.Take the new CBS News poll. While motorists continue to refuel, they are cutting back on spending in other areas — like eating out — to compensate.
The impact of high gas prices is increasing: The average household now spends $4,800 a year on gasoline, up from $2,800 a year ago,Wall Street analyst Ed Yardeni.
Unfortunately, analysts are not predicting a pullback in natural gas prices anytime soon.De Haan sees a good chance that prices will take a hitwhile a more pessimistic recent analysis by JPMorgan predicted the national average to August.
Berkeley’s Borenstein recentlyCBS News said he doesn’t expect to hit $2 or $3 a gallon anytime soon. That’s because crude oil prices have risen over the past 12 months, and the world’s demand for fossil fuels is rising, despite a lagging supply, he noted.
“Even beforeWe see a lag in oil production. U.S. producers report that they have difficulty getting workers back to the fields,” Borenstein said. “They have supply chain issues with parts and equipment.