Editorial: The extra pinch at the pump this summer was real

If it seems you paid more for gasoline this summer in Michigan than last summer, you did.

The good news, however, is the forecast for the rest of the year has you paying less.

According to Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com, motorists paid on average four cents a gallon more for gas this summer than they did last. Nationwide, that amounted to $2.9 billion more out of the general economy and into the petroleum industry’s coffers.

The difference between Memorial Day and Labor Day the two summers is that last summer, prices fluctuated more drastically than this year.

DeHaan said there is good news, however, and that is “American households should recover many of the fuel dollars that we surrendered to summer prices.” He said last year the lowest gas prices of the year occurred in December, when the national average for a gallon of gas was $3.23. This year he predicted consumers might actually experience gas at $3.10 before Dec. 31.

Gasoline is one of the necessities most of us must deal with, but one that we have little control over. Given prices the past several years, as evidence above, a lot of disposable income ended up out of your wallet and into petroleum industry control.

If DeHaan is correct in his prediction, however, maybe Santa might have a dollar or two more to spend this year than last.