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Gas Prices And Recessions

 February 24, 2012 02:45 PM


Anyone wondering about the relationship between rising gasoline prices and recessions might want to have a look at the chart below from the St. Louis Federal Reserve''s FRED data base and observe that we seem to have "escaped a bullet" last year. But, if gas prices go as high this spring and summer as many are predicting, we may not be so lucky this year.

Energy Department data for retail gasoline prices only goes back to 1990, so, Labor Department data from the Consumer Price Index is used instead, presumably the only difference being that you get the CPI Gasoline index instead of gas prices on the left.

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