The national average for a gallon of gas hit an all-time record high in the U.S. on Tuesday, and for a short time on Monday the popular app GasBuddy went down as consumers searched for the cheapest gas.
The national average this morning is $4.17, according to AAA, up more than 50 cents from last week.
Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, said that sanctions limiting Russia’s ability to sell crude oil is the main reason for the explosion of prices. Another factor is the loosening of COVID-19 restrictions and the rising demand which should expand with the coming summer months.
GasBuddy predicts the peak will not come until May at $4.25/gallon, and will begin to decline after May but remain high for months until November.
President Biden is facing a tough decision with calls increasing to ban the import of Russian oil, but on Monday the White House expressed openness to do so.
Top Republicans and Democrats said they had reached a bipartisan deal to punish Russia that would include an oil ban. A White House national security official said Biden was considering the proposal, which would break the precedent of aligning sanctions with European nations.
“What the president is most focused on,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Monday, “is ensuring we are continuing to take steps to deliver punishing economic consequences on Putin while taking all action necessary to limit the impact to prices at the gas pump.”