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'World News' Predicts $7-a-Gallon Gasoline

     Despite including a high gas price prediction, ABC “World News with Charles Gibson” provided much-needed context to rising gas prices in its May 27 broadcast. The report acknowledged the supply and demand factors currently driving up the cost of gasoline.


     “Economist Jeff Rubin says one bad hurricane this summer could affect refinery capacity and send gas prices soaring,” Sharyn Alfonsi reported. “But even with good weather, global demand will push prices up all summer long.”


     “This isn’t a spike. This isn’t somebody turning off the tap. This is a fundamental imbalance between demand and supply,” Rubin, CEO of CIBC World Markets, said.


     But the supply-and-demand realism didn’t prevent “World News” from forecasting worst-case scenario prices. “A couple Memorial Day weekends from now we could be looking at $7 a gallon gasoline,” Rubin said.


     Alfonsi called the current summer “the summer of discontent,” noting that “in every section of the country, gas prices are rising.” She pointed out the national average is just under $4 a gallon and said “many” economists predict the benchmark will be passed in the coming week.


     But anchor Charles Gibson added some oft-ignored context to the gas price story – how little Americans are still paying compared to much of the rest of the world.


     “[I]f you seek any solace,” Gibson said, “be glad you don’t drive in Europe, where the price of gasoline is just over $8.50 in Germany, $9.25 per gallon in Britain and $12 per gallon in Holland.”