The Effects of Gas Prices

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Every consumer is looking to his or her wallet and bank accounts and wondering where all of their hard-earned money is going. The answer is plain and simple – Gas! Gas prices have slowly begun to hurt families financially; including my own. Families are taking drastic measures to make ends meet to ensure their automobile is topped-off each week. For the past several years, the Nation's economy has seen a steady incline in gasoline prices. This essay will examine the factors that play a significant role contributing to the increasing prices. Why are gas prices so high? One of the top reasons for the increase in prices is the supply and demand for oil. Crude oil accounts for 55% of the price of gasoline, whereas taxes and distribution control the remaining 45% (Amadeo, 2011). Typically, taxes and distribution are steady, so that the daily adjustment in the price of gasoline correctly reflects oil price fluctuations. However, occasionally, distribution lines are interrupted or are down for maintenance, which can oftentimes result in high gas prices even when oil prices are down (Amadeo, 2011). I currently work in the District of Columbia, and like most locals here, I commute to work every day in order to afford a home within my families means. With gas prices reaching a record high, beating out the average of $4 per gallon back in 2008 (Amadeo, 2011), I find myself filling up my tank twice a week for $4.13 per gallon. The increase in gas prices has recently only affected my family in several ways. To afford the spike in gas prices, my family has had to cut back on eating out at restaurants, visits to the movie theater, and stretching our groceries for the month to ensure we have money for gas. I interviewed several of my coworkers to determine how gas prices have been affecting them. Although others are still choosing to drive, some have decided to park their car and settle for alternate means of transportation such as: public transportation, riding a bike, or...
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