Expected gasoline prices are closely tied to crude oil prices.
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In the February Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), EIA forecasts motor gasoline consumption in 2015 to increase by 80,000 barrels/day (bbl/d), or 0.9% (Figure 1). Forecast growth in highway travel, which is attributable to increases in population, employment, and disposable income, and retail gasoline prices substantially below those in 2014, more than offset improvements in the fuel economy of the vehicle fleet. All other things equal, lower gasoline prices increase gasoline demand. Although the impact of gasoline price changes on demand grows over time as fuel prices affect consumers’ vehicle purchase decisions and where they choose to live, which affects commuting distances, the short-term impact of prices on gasoline demand is quite modest.