Get ready for pain at the pump, and a possible economic curve ball.
Experts are predicting gas prices will go as high as $3.75 per gallon this spring, USA Today reported Monday. Gas prices were at $3.06 at the end of 2010, according to USA Today.
Another jump in gas prices could crimp consumer budgets and potentially slow the nation’s already languid economic recovery.
In 2008, Americans responded to rising gas prices by cutting back on everything from the cable bill to restaurant visits, and some even traded in the family SUV.
Average gas prices hit a high of more than $4 a gallon in the summer of 2008 before falling sharply amid the nation’s deep financial crisis that fall.
This round of pain may also only be temporary. Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, told USA Today he expects gas prices to fall again, just as they did back in 2008.
"We learned in 2008 that when things become a little untethered, what comes up often comes down," Kloza told USA Today.