As of December 2006, the rack price of ethanol was $2.43 versus $1.69 for unleaded gasoline--a difference of 74 cents per gallon. Unleaded gasoline's average rack price in December was four cents higher than the previous month and six cents higher than a year ago. The ethanol rack price was 18 cents higher in December compared to the price in November and 44 cents higher than a year ago.
The year 2006 brought the MTBE phaseout and the switch to ethanol as an additive. The average prices for 2006 for both ethanol and unleaded gasoline were higher than the average prices for 2005. The ethanol average was $2.58 compared to $1.80 (a 43-percent increase), and the unleaded gasoline average was $1.94 compared to $1.66 (a 17-percent increase).