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IEA sees U.S. gasoline demand falling

PARIS, May 17 (UPI) -- Overall gasoline demand in the U.S. market in 2011 is expected to decline 1.5 percent compared with 2010, the IEA said.

Gasoline prices in most U.S. markets are hovering around $4 per gallon in part because of modest economic recovery and conflict in the Middle East.

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The International Energy Agency states that if gasoline prices remain high, demand should fall compared with 2010 even when considering seasonal spikes during the upcoming summer driving season.

"Research suggests that gasoline demand in the U.S. will average 8.9 million barrels per day in 2011, down 1.5 percent from the previous year," the IEA said in a statement. "Demand from April to September will decline by 2 percent this year, when matched against the same period last year."

The IEA said gasoline prices are 40 percent higher this month than they were during the same time last year.

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