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Chart of the Day
One positive outcome of the financial crisis was that gasoline prices did plunge from their record highs – down 60% peak to trough. Beginning at the end of 2008, however, gasoline prices have surged and are currently 61% above their December 2008 lows. Today’s chart provides some perspective on the recent spike with a long-term view of the average US price for a gallon of unleaded gasoline. It is interesting to note that most gasoline price spikes were a result of Middle East crises and often preceded or coincided with a US recession. So while gasoline prices are currently well below the record high levels of 2007, this recent rally has brought prices to a level well above what was witnessed from 1984-2004 – a two decade span of relative energy price stability.

Notes:
- Where's the market headed? The answer may surprise you. Find out right now with the exclusive & Barron's recommended charts of Chart of the Day Plus.

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Quote of the Day
"The Stone Age didn't end because they ran out of stones; the Oil Age won't end because we run out of oil." - Don Huberts

Events of the Day
August 31, 2009 - US Open tennis tournament begins (ends September 13th)

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