US families spent an average of nearly $3,000 on fuel last year

Does it feel like more of your paycheck is going to pay to fuel up your vehicle? According to the US Energy Information Administration, it is. Last year, the average US household paid $2,912 for gasoline, which represents almost four percent of the average household annual income. The government agency notes that this is the highest percentage of household income spent on fuel in almost 30 years (save 2008, when the numbers were similar).

Oddly enough, US gas consumption fell to its lowest level since 2001, but gas prices have risen dramatically over the last couple of years to take a bigger bite out of our paychecks – 26.1 percent alone in 2011 and another 3.3 percent in 2012. Last year's 3.3 percent fuel price increase was slightly more than the 2.9 percent increase in household income. The one thing we can't blame this on is modern cars. Despite the fact the average US household's travel has increased "significantly" since the '80s, vehicles are now more efficient than ever.

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