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An end in sight for rising gas prices? Expert says not to expect one anytime soon

AAA says the average for a gallon of unleaded gasoline in Minnesota right now is $4.66.

MINNEAPOLIS — Every day it seems gas prices just get higher as we creep toward $5 a gallon.

On average, a gallon of gas right now in Minnesota will cost you $4.66, jumping 8 cents just since Monday.

Kyle Baker is the chemical manager for Clearscape, a landscaping company based out of New Brighton that's in charge of 200 properties around the Twin Cities. 

It's an industry he says gas prices could very well tank.

"You start going up too high in gas prices and how long can people afford to pay for the service?" questioned Baker. 

It costs $20 to fill up one of his machines every day. It's at least five times that to top the tank of his work truck. 

"I didn't even get to fill it all the way up before the American Express card got stopped because it gets stopped at $125," said Baker.

AAA says a gallon of gas in Hennepin County costs about $4.62, but KARE 11 found some spots that are nearly 17 cents higher. 

University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management professor Akshay Rao says prices always go up in the summer, but the war in Ukraine, record inflation and supply chain issues are adding to the pain at the pump.

"If that continues and people are not tightening their belts, then this pressure will continue to have an impact on prices," said Rao. 

Rao says how high might go is anyone's guess. But they could persist past fall as people continue to recover their own costs.

"I hope not very much more, though I fully expect that the decline in gas prices will be slower than the increase has been," said Rao. "When fall rolls around, when the summer travel season dissipates, the increase will hopefully stop."

The professor is also closely watching at what point consumer behavior changes and whether people start car pooling.

"At some point, we’re going to have to confront the fact that the fossil fuel is going to make life more and more difficult for us," said Rao, who encourages people to start considering alternative forms of energy.

In Baker's case, he fears people will start to cut back on a luxury like lawn care services.

"Luxuries are what get cut first when you're short on money," he said.

His company is already raising its prices for clients as high gas prices don't show any signs of slowing down. 

"There's potential for them to go back down again," he said.

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