Updated April 26, 2016

Gas Price Statistics: 23 Surprising Facts to Know

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Get pumped for some fun gas facts! Here are 23 statistics on gas price trends (#9 will probably either get you fuming or make you want to move!).

© Mike Mozart (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr

Even when gas prices are easier to swallow, like they are now, they are hot topics of conversation. We’re either consumed with high prices or amazed at the low prices.

GAS PRICES IN THE U.S.

  1. How does the cost of gas compare to a gallon of milk?
    As of October 2015, the nationwide average for a gallon of gas was $2.36. A gallon of milk, on the other hand, came in at $3.34 on average.

  2. What part of the U.S. has the highest gas prices?
    It’ll cost you more to drive around on the West Coast. At the end of November 2015, the per-gallon price was set at $2.55.

  3. In what region is gas the cheapest?
    If you’re looking for cheap gas, head to the Gulf Coast or the Midwest. As of November 2015, the per-gallon price came to $1.82 and $1.87, respectively.

  4. Which state has the highest gas prices?
    Surprisingly, it’s not California that tops the list for the most expensive gas. The going rate for a gallon of regular unleaded fuel in Hawaii was $2.80, according to AAA’s December 2015 Fuel Gauge Report.

  5. Which state has the lowest gas prices?
    According to AAA, South Carolina leads the way with the least expensive gas. Through the first week of December 2015, the per-gallon price was set at $1.81 for regular unleaded gas.

  6. Where are gas taxes the highest?
    In terms of the highest combined state and federal excise taxes, Pennsylvania is penalizing drivers the most. As of October 2015, the total gas tax rate came to 73.70 cents per gallon.

  7. Where are they lowest?
    Alaska takes the prize for the lowest gas taxes nationwide. According to an October 2015 report from the American Petroleum Institute, the combined state and federal gas tax rate was 30.65 cents per gallon.

  8. What’s the national average gas tax?
    Between the highs and lows, drivers are getting hit with a healthy amount of taxes overall. On average, Americans are paying 48.69 cents per gallon in gas taxes as of October 2015.

FUEL PRICES AROUND THE WORLD

© liz west (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr

  1. What country has the cheapest gas worldwide?
    Gas prices are unbelievably low in Venezuela, where the government subsidizes the cost for drivers. As of November 2015, the cost for a gallon of unleaded gas was just 2 cents in U.S. currency.

  2. Which country’s drivers pay the most for gas?
    By comparison, drivers in Hong Kong don’t get off quite so cheap. Through November 2015, the average cost of a gallon of unleaded gas was an unbelievable $7.08 USD.

  3. Where do residents spend the lowest percentage of income on gas?
    According to a report from Bloomberg, residents of Venezuela are spending virtually 0% of their daily income on a gallon of gas. By comparison, Americans spend 1.8% of their daily wages per gallon.

  4. Where do they spend the most?
    Residents of South Africa are parting with the highest amount of income to fuel up, spending a little over 4% of their pay on a single gallon of gas. Greece takes second place, with 3.3% of income.

  5. Where is diesel fuel the cheapest?
    Once again, it’s Venezuela that boasts the best prices for diesel fuel. Through the end of November 2015, drivers were spending a measly 1 cent USD per gallon to fill up.

  6. Where does it cost the most?
    Like gasoline, diesel tends to be more expensive in Europe. The U.K. has the highest diesel prices worldwide, coming in at $6.29 USD per gallon as of November 2015.

OIL PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION

© Mack Male (CC BY-SA 2.0) via Flickr

  1. How much oil does the U.S. produce each day?
    The U.S. is a major player in the oil production game. According to the Energy Information Administration, the United States produces about 9.3 million barrels of crude oil per day, as of June 2015.

  2. How much oil does the U.S. consume on a daily basis?
    Consumption of oil in the U.S. is roughly double its production, totaling 19.11 million barrels of crude oil per day, according to the EIA. The U.S. consistently ranks as the world’s top oil consumer.

  3. Which country produces the most oil each year?
    A report issued in June 2015 by BP saw the U.S. continue in its role as the largest oil producer, ahead of both Saudi Arabia and Russia. Overall, the U.S. produces around 3.4 billion gallons of crude oil annually.

  4. Which country has the world’s largest oil reserves?
    While the U.S. is a top producer of oil, it ranks lower on the list in terms of oil reserves. The EIA estimates that Venezuela has the world’s largest oil reserve supply, with 298 million barrels as of 2014. Saudi Arabia came in second, with 268 million barrels.

GAS PRICE BEHAVIOR CHANGES

© Frank Jania (CC BY-SA 2.0) via Flickr

  1. Do higher gas prices cut down on speeding?
    Research has shown that higher gas prices can influence whether drivers are putting the pedal to the medal. In one study, drivers reduced their speed by 0.27 mph for every $1 increase in gas prices.

  2. Do higher gas prices reduce car accidents?
    Having to pay more at the pump can reduce traffic on the roads, which researchers suggest is linked to fewer accidents. In a global study of 144 countries, traffic fatalities decreased between 3-6% for every 10% increase in gas prices.

  3. Does cheaper gas make you spend more?
    Low gas prices mean you’re saving more money, but most Americans aren’t socking it away. A study from J.P. Morgan Chase found that during the period from 2013-14, when gas prices declined, consumers were spending roughly 80% of the money they were saving on gas, rather than setting it aside for a rainy day.

  4. Do higher gas prices make you healthier?
    A hike in gas prices isn’t without a silver lining. According to a study from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, a permanent $1 increase in gas prices could potentially reduce obesity rates in the U.S. by 10%.

  5. Do lower gas prices increase happiness levels?
    Even though you may not realize it, the amount you’re paying for gas can affect your mental and emotional well-being. In one study, researchers found that the more gas prices climb, the more likely consumers will feel a lack of satisfaction with their lives.

THE BOTTOM LINE

As the numbers show, Americans fare better than many countries when it comes to fuel prices. While prices aren’t as dirt-cheap as they are in South America, they’re not quite as steep as what people are paying in Europe and Asia. Even when prices are low, it pays to keep this expense in check. To keep your fuel costs as low as possible, take a look at our handy guide to saving more money on gas.

SOURCES:

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • U.S. Energy Information Administration
  • American Petroleum Institute
  • AAA
  • MyTravelCost
  • Bloomberg
  • Journal of Environmental Economics and Management
  • Economic Inquiry
  • Journal of Urban Economics
  • J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Institute
  • University of North Carolina-Greensboro

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