Gasoline prices are on the biggest streak of declines since 2015, a relief for both consumers and President Joe Biden who has made fighting inflation a central theme ahead of November midterm elections.
US pump prices are averaging $3.892 a gallon after reaching a record high of $5.016 a gallon in mid-June and have fallen for 70 straight days, according to auto club AAA. Prices haven’t fallen that many days since January 2015.
The price drop is a welcome respite for consumers after fuel costs earlier this summer forced many to forgo driving vacations and change their lifestyles. President Biden has staked much of his political capital to bringing down energy costs, ordering the release of millions of barrels of crude from the nation’s strategic reserves and rallying other nations to do so.
Prices have fallen along with those of crude oil, the major component to the cost of gasoline. A relatively slow summer of fuel consumption and wider recession fears contributed to the decline as did the release of as much as 1 million barrels per day of oil from US emergency reserves. The release is planned to continue until October.
The decline is likely to continue as the driving season winds down. At current levels, pump prices are still 23% higher than the same time last year.