The nation’s average gas price increased for the seventh straight week, surging 26.0 cents from a week ago to $4.85 per gallon. The national average is up 56.0 cents from a month ago and $1.81 per gallon higher than a year ago. The national average diesel price increased 11.5 cents in the last week and stands at $5.62 per gallon. GasBuddy’s Patrick De Haan says, “It now appears not if, but when, we’ll hit that psychologically critical $5 national average.” Gasoline inventories continue to decline even with demand softening due to high prices, a culmination of less refining capacity and strong consumption. Nine states have average gas prices above the $5 per gallon mark, with more set to join in the days and weeks ahead. Diesel prices also stand at a record high, which pushes prices of most goods higher. With China’s economy now largely fully reopen, oil demand is likely to rise further.