I happened upon this picture I took back in 1999 the other day. So almost exactly 9 years ago, a gallon of regular could be had for about 85 cents in Colorado. Admittedly, even back in 1999 that was cheap, which is the reason I took this picture in the first place. In California, a gallon of regular was around $1.15 at that time. I just filled my tank today, and I paid $3.39 a gallon for regular (only the Porsche gets Premium). This translates to an average price increase of about 13% per year for the last nine years. However, prices didn’t increase gradually – we saw huge swings in short periods of time. For example, last week I paid 6% or 20 cents less a gallon than today. Such price volatility has become a staple in today’s energy market. See the chart below for how prices developed since 1996.