What’s the Gas Price Forecast for 2022?
Businesses across the country are struggling to get a firm grip on gas prices following last year’s nearly 50% increase. Predicting future gas prices – an essential factor in forecasting business expense – is difficult under the best of circumstances.
Add the ongoing pandemic, rising inflation, and global tensions driving up crude oil prices into the mix, and generating an accurate gas price forecast for 2022 becomes even more difficult.
In January 2022, the average price per gallon was $3.31, almost a dollar higher than a year ago. That’s the bad news. Is there any good news on the horizon?
The short answer is yes! Businesses can expect to see gas prices stabilize and slowly drop later in 2022. Keep reading, and let’s look at what the experts are saying quarter by quarter.
First Quarter 2022
The consensus is that gas prices will stabilize at near current levels during the first quarter of the year with the average price per gallon:
- January – $3.26
- February – $3.19
- March – $3.30
Likewise, crude oil prices – always subject to international tensions (Ukraine vs Russia) – should begin to level off, barring any significant disruption. The administration’s release of 50 million barrels of oil in late November also had a moderating effect.
Second Quarter 2022
Seasonal demand always rises in the spring, pushing gas prices up, and 2022 will be no exception. Adding to that, the pandemic’s impact in reducing travel will begin to weaken, leading to the highest gas prices in 2022:
- April – $3.64
- May – $3.79
- June – $3.78
Businesses concerned with how expensive gas is will be looking at new ways like Instafuel to achieve added cost and efficiency savings.
Third Quarter 2022
Thankfully, businesses can expect some relief as the gas price drop begins in earnest during the third quarter. In addition, seasonal demand, which peaked during May and June, contributes to falling prices:
- July – $3.67
- August – $3.57
- September – $3.30
Fourth Quarter 2022
There is very positive news for gas-dependent businesses on the horizon during the last three months of the year!
A combination of increased crude production (accompanied by falling crude prices), slowing inflation, and weakening demand add up to falling gas prices as the year winds down:
- October – $3.15
- November – $3.06
- December – $3.00
By December 2022, the US’s average gas price per gallon should be hovering right around $3 per gallon.
Gas Price Forecast: Beware Uncertainty
While inflation plays a role in rising gas prices, the most significant uncertainty in making any gas price predictions are unexpected geopolitical and weather events.
Any disruptions in crude oil production, processing, or transport can throw the best forecasts out the window.
The Bottom Line
As with most pricing predictions, there is good and bad news as we look ahead at a gas price forecast for 2022.
Companies projecting fuel costs for 2022 should expect prices to rise again during the second quarter, reaching a peak of $3.78 per gallon in July.
The good news begins in late summer as gasoline prices begin a steady decline throughout the fall and winter. You can expect the average price per gallon to drop by nearly 80 cents between July and December – a welcome relief!
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