Gas prices unlikely to impact boat usage

WASHINGTON – After an average price per gallon last summer of $3.81 – and a peak above $4.00 – this summer’s projected average regular-grade gasoline price of $2.23 per gallon is welcome news.

This prediction – made by the Energy Information Administration on Tuesday – encompasses the April through September months, according to an article today in USA Today. The group expects the monthly average to peak at $2.30 a gallon, the newspaper reported.

“With gas prices low, we expect very heavy use of boats this summer,” said Thom Dammrich, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association, in an e-mail interview today. “Boating is extremely affordable at this level of gas prices and we expect boater’s passion for the water to get them out as much as ever!”

These prices won’t last forever, though. The EIA expects crude oil prices, which it forecasts to average $53 a barrel this year, to increase by about $10 per barrel next year, according to the newspaper. However, those predictions don’t take into account the possibility of a stronger-than-expected economic recovery or lower global production, which could mean higher prices sooner.

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