October 31, 2019: I completely missed this. But a reader caught it. The reader points out, and I agree, the gasoline demand is due to a) low price; and, b) full employment (maybe not in that order). Much appreciated. See first comment.
In the DFW (north Texas) area, Gas Buddy shows regular unleaded gasoline easily found at $2.10/gallon. In fact, earlier in the week three neighborhood service stations advertised regular unleaded gasoline for $2.08/gallon. It appears the most common price for this gasoline is $2.19/gallon. In Long Beach, CA, the same grade of gasoline appears to be running about $3.69/gallon.
If I was allowed only one metric to track / "evaluate" the US economy, it would be gasoline demand. I have said that many times.
See this link: Through July of this year (2019), the all-time high was last June, 2018, at 9.797 million bbls, followed by August, 2018, of 9.778 million bbls per day. I assume that record could be eclipsed when the August, 2019, data is released.
However, until that data is released, it should be noted that for the most recent week for which data is available (week ending 10/25/19), gasoline demand was 9.784 million bbls per day, which eclipses the August, 2018, data, and is very close to the record set in June, 2018.
Yes, I notice that the data above is a four -week average where the link with monthly data is a monthly average -- slightly different ways of measuring the demand. Be that as it may.
The second point, and this is comparing apples to apples, the rate of growth in gasoline demand in the last few weeks it significantly greater than the rate of growth one year ago.
All things being equal, the recent spurt in gasoline demand is quite remarkable.
This is not the type of graph I would associate with "recession is right around the corner."