U.S. Gas Prices Hit a High, but Oil Market May Signal Relief

With the summer driving season approaching, the national average price for regular gasoline soared on Tuesday to a nominal record of $4.37 a gallon. But relief may be on the way, with oil prices falling below $100 a barrel, a drop of roughly 10 percent since the weekend.

It can take a week for prices at the pump to reflect the gyrations of the crude oil price, which has dropped from more than $120 for West Texas intermediate, the U.S. benchmark, in March. It ended Tuesday at $99.76.

That weakness reflects a slowing of the Chinese economy because of a lockdown of several cities combating the Covid-19 pandemic, along with a growing consensus among traders that the global economy is also slowing.

“I think the consumer will get a bit of a break here,” said Tom Kloza, global head of energy analysis at Oil Price Information Service. “Just watch out for July and August. I think the consumer will drive this summer whether it’s $4 a gallon or $6 a…

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