Jun 11, 2022 - Economy

National average gas price hits $5 per gallon for first time

Gas prices over $5.00 a gallon are displayed at gas station

Gas prices cross the $5 a gallon threshold at a New Jersey station on June 7. Photo: Lokman Vural Elibol/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The national average price for regular gasoline spiked to a never-before-seen $5 per gallon on Saturday, according to AAA.

Why it matters: Gas prices are key inflation indicators to the American public, and their persistent climb is a headwind for both consumer spending — as gas bills eat into household budgets — and politicians hoping to stay in power, writes Axios' Matt Phillips.

The big picture: The price of gas soared as Russia's invasion of Ukraine disrupted energy markets and drove up costs, even as the country grapples with decades-high inflation rates.

What they're saying: "It’s been one kink after another this year, and worst of all, demand doesn’t seem to be responding to the surge in gas prices, meaning there is a high probability that prices could go even higher in the weeks ahead," said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, which said the national average gas price hit $5 on Thursday.

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