Happy New Years Eve and welcome to On The Money, your evening guide to everything related to your bills, your bank account and your results. Subscribe here: thehill.com/newsletter-inscription.
Today’s Big Deal: Analysts forecast U.S. gasoline prices to rise in the coming months, exacerbating problems for President BidenJoe Biden FDA clears second rapid home COVID-19 test Pentagon awards $ 6.7 million contract for domestic production of essential material for rapid COVID-19 testing and Democrats ahead of the midterm elections. We’ll also look at ongoing flight cancellations by major airlines amid a spike in coronavirus cases.
There is no newsletter for tomorrow, but On the Money will be back on Monday. Good year.
For The Hill, I’m Aris Folley. Write to me at [email protected] Where @ArisFolley. You can reach my colleagues from the Finance team Naomi Jagoda at [email protected] Where @NJagoda and Sylvan Lane at [email protected] Where @SylvanLane.
Rising gas prices complicate Biden’s horizons
Analysts expect gasoline prices in the United States to climb to $ 4 a gallon by this summer, putting the brakes on drivers and exacerbating President Biden’s problems.
The White House has seen Biden’s approval ratings drop due to a mix of issues, including inflation and rising prices at the pump. In recent weeks, administration officials have touted a slight drop in prices, saying the drop is linked to various Biden policies.
But a new forecast from fuel pricing app GasBuddy said fuel prices in June could climb to between $ 3.43 and $ 4.13 per gallon.
- The same forecast predicts that prices will then drop later in the year, which may provide some relief, with gasoline prices expected to drop to around $ 3.16 per gallon in October.
- They are expected to be lower in the fall, with prices varying between $ 3.09 and $ 3.52 in September, $ 2.96 and $ 3.35 in October, and $ 2.87 and $ 3.24 in November. .
- GasBuddy’s head of oil analysis Patrick De Haan noted that “potential outcomes vary widely” and said a lot of uncertainties are caused by the pandemic.
Rachel Frazin of The Hill has more here.
LEAD THE DAY
Major Airlines Continue to Cancel Flights Amid COVID-19 Peak
JetBlue Airways announced Thursday that it will cancel more than 1,200 flights until mid-January amid a spike in coronavirus cases caused by the highly transmissible variant of omicron.
The airline is canceling 1,280 flights, or about 10% of its bookings, until January 13 in an attempt to “go even further compared to the expected increase in Omicron cases.” executives wrote in a note to employees.
“The past week has been one of our most difficult times during the pandemic,” three JetBlue department heads wrote in Tuesday’s note. “The exponential growth of Omicron cases over just a few days is at a level that no one could reasonably prepare for.”
- Major airlines from Spirit to United continue to cancel flights as they grapple with staff shortages as the number of cases increases. More than 1,000 flights were canceled in the United States on Thursday, according to flight tracking site FlightAware.
- Meanwhile, millions of people still travel during the holidays and in the New Year. According to Transportation Security Administration checkpoint data, approximately 2 million travelers have been screened at U.S. airports every day since Christmas.
- To address staff shortages, JetBlue joined Delta Air Lines last week to urge the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to reduce the isolation period for those infected or exposed from 10 days to five days, which the agency said. did earlier this week.
Read more about The Hill’s Brad Drees here.
BY HULL OR HIGH WATER
CDC says to avoid cruise ships regardless of vaccine status
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has advised Americans to avoid travel by cruise ship regardless of their vaccination status amid a global wave of coronavirus cases.
In a report Released on Thursday, the health agency’s COVID-19 travel health notice updated the warning from Level 3 to Level 4, which is the health agency’s highest warning level.
The agency said those vaccinated and boosted risked spreading the virus on board.
Olafimihan Oshin from The Hill has more here.
MUSK UNTIL DAWN
Tesla recalls nearly 500,000 US vehicles over safety concerns
Tesla has recalled nearly 500,000 US-based vehicles over safety concerns.
In a letter To the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) this week, Tesla announced plans to recall 356,309 Model 3 vehicles manufactured between 2017 and 2020 over concerns that the car’s backup camera wiring harness could be damaged by the ‘opening and closing the trunk, which the company said it could prevent the rear view camera image from being displayed.
The company is also recalling up to 119,909 Model S cars manufactured between 2014 and 2021 due to misalignment of the car’s front trunk latch, which Tesla said could prevent the secondary cowl latch from engaging and causing the unexpected opening of the hood. according to another letter Wednesday to NHTSA.
Read more about Olafimihan here.
Good to know
Amazon update its artificial intelligence (AI) Alexa after a user posted that an Amazon device told their child to do what’s called the “penny challenge,” a company spokesperson said Thursday.
Here’s what else we have on our minds:
- Tesla says it is the intention to call back nearly 500,000 US-based vehicles due to safety concerns.
That’s all for today. Thanks for reading and check out The Hill’s Finances page for the latest news and coverage.