Economy strain: Gas prices, inflation impacting Americans' wallets

The economy continues to show some signs of stress. The Dow saw its biggest decline since 2020 and Americans continue to face the burden of inflation, especially at the pump.

"It's going to be a costly summer," said Patrick De Haan,'s head of petroleum analysis.

Inflation is showing no signs of letting up at the pump as gas prices hit a new record this week with the average price per gallon now sitting at $4.58. The national average is increasing every day this week and rising roughly 50 cents over the past month.

"Demand, according to Gas Buddy is up in the last week.. it's a sign that consumers don't really plan to slow down this summer," said De Haan.

Gas prices are taking a big bite out of consumers' budgets. A new report finds U.S. households are now spending approximately $5,000 a year on gasoline. That's up from just $2,800 a year ago.

At a gas station, some people weighed in on the situation.

"They're outrageous."

"It's gonna kill the country.. these diesel prices."

"Just spending that much money, period. Like I said, $100 or more a week, that adds up."

"I'll probably have to get rid of this 'cause it burns a lot of gas."

Drivers in California are getting hit the hardest with the average price per gallon sitting above $6.

All this as we're inching closer to the start of Memorial Day weekend and the start of the summer travel season. Many Americans are not giving up on their vacation plans, which could lead to an increase in demand.

"Not a lot of motorists likely to stay home as a result. Given the fact that this is going to be the best summer to hit the road since the start of the pandemic," said De Haan.

Some analysts are now predicting the national average for a gallon of gas could surpass $6 by the end of the summer.

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