CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — The average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline held steady over the past two weeks at $2.94 per gallon.
Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg of the Lundberg Survey said Sunday that the price at the pump was likely to remain stable or drop as wholesale costs begin to decrease.
The price of a gallon of regular-grade gas is 93 cents higher than it was a year ago.
The highest average price in the nation right now is $3.99 a gallon in the San Francisco Bay Area. The lowest average is $2.50 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The average price of diesel dropped a penny over the same period to $3.13.
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Like any group of stocks related to travel and tourism, hotel stocks saw a steep drop in share prices in 2020. The leisure and hospitality sector that once had 15 million employees has lost 4 million jobs since February.
Many major cities will be feeling the ripple effects of the Covid-19 pandemic for years. However, there is ample evidence that shows the pandemic may be coming to an end. The number of new cases is dropping. The number of those getting vaccinated is rising. And even in the cities with the most restrictive mitigation measures, the slow process of reopening is beginning.
All of this can’t come fast enough for individuals who rely on the travel and tourism industry for their livelihood. Hotel chains had at least some revenue coming in the door. And when earnings season concludes, the more budget-friendly hotel chains may realize revenue that is 75% of its 2019 numbers. But that is not enough to bring the hotels to anywhere near full employment. Particularly with hotels that have bars and restaurants that have remained closed or open at limited capacity.
Many economists are optimistic that travel may begin to look more normal by the summer of this year. And the global economy may deliver 6.4% GDP growth this year. With that in mind, the hotel chains with the best fundamentals and the broadest footprint will be in the best position as the economy reopens.
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