It’s a pretty slow time of the year for news so the chances are good you’re going to hear or read a story about rising gas prices over the July 4th holiday.
Why, look! Here’s one now!
“Travelers to pay highest holiday gasoline prices in 6 years,” says Bring Me The News, citing a report from AAA Minnesota.
“Gas prices at six-year high for this time of year,” says the Dayton News, taking a more national look.
The numbers don’t suggest the drama of the headlines. The price of gasoline in Minnesota at the moment is only about a penny more than it was three years ago, but a headline that gas prices are up one cent from three years ago doesn’t exactly take one’s breath away.
Here is the actual data, courtesy of the Energy Information Agency.
Technically, the prices are the highest since 2008, but that reflects how high the prices were in the pre-economic-meltdown days. In the last four years, gasoline prices have fluctuated in a very narrow, almost statistically insignificant range.
Overnight, the price of gasoline in the Twin Cities dropped to $3.499. Adjusted for inflation, that’s only 3 cents higher than a year ago, 5 cents lower than two years ago.
In fact, look at the chart with prices adjusted for inflation.
Bottom line? Meh.