It Now Takes 5 Hours Of Work To Earn Enough Money To Fill The Gas Tank

Another awesome piece of work from our friends over at The Chart Store.   The chart below is a times series of the numbers of hours of work — based on the average hourly wage — needed to buy a barrel of crude oil.    Given the current wage of $19.53 in October it now takes 4.7 hours of work to purchase a barrel of crude.  Add another couple of hours when Iran heats up.

The chart does illustrate how real wages whip around with the price of crude oil.  As a rule of thumb one barrel of crude (42 gallons)  produces around 20 gallons or about one tank of gasoline.   So what took 2 hours of work to fill the tank 10 years ago now takes about 5 hours.   Of course this is a simplification as other byproducts are produced from a barrel of crude,  but it is does illustrate the point.

We’ll post more of the The Chart Store’s excellent work throughout this week.


Read more posts on Global Macro Monitor »

NOW WATCH: Money & Markets videos

Want to read a more in-depth view on the trends influencing Australian business and the global economy? BI / Research is designed to help executives and industry leaders understand the major challenges and opportunities for industry, technology, strategy and the economy in the future. Sign up for free at