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Consumer Sentiment and Gas Prices in 2017

The latest NACS Convenience Matters podcast looks at how fuels-related trends in 2016 could affect the market in 2017.
January 10, 2017

​ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Consumer sentiment about the economy has traditionally been lockstep with gas prices: when prices fall, consumer optimism increases. But as 2017 begins, consumer confidence is at a record high, according to four years of consumer tracking data by NACS—even though gas prices began to climb in December 2016 and are higher now than a year ago.

With fuel prices largely out of the control of retailers, what do recent market developments mean for fuels retailers in 2017—and what are the broad trends that will shape the industry—both at the pump and inside the store? That’s the subject of the latest NACS Convenience Matters podcast.

In the latest episode, “Consumer Sentiment and Gas Prices in 2017,” cohosts Jeff Lenard, NACS vice president of strategic industry initiatives, and John Eichberger, executive director of the Fuels Institute, discuss what factors may affect the fuels market in 2017—and what retailers are doing to help control their destinies.

“Traditionally, retailers cite three factors that can greatly affect their businesses: the weather, the economy and oil prices—and all three are largely out of their control. But increasingly, retailers are focusing more attention on other factors of their business over which they have control—and they are finding new ways to attract more customers,” Lenard said.

The episode can be downloaded on iTunes or Google Play by searching for “Convenience Matters.” It is also available at

A new Convenience Matters podcast will be released every week, focusing on topics related to convenience stores. Since its launch in February 2016, it has been downloaded in more than 50 countries.