Average gas prices are the highest since September 2015
Gas prices are rising across the country. The national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded jumped 7 cents in the past week. Sunday’s average of $2.39 is the highest since September 2015.
Also in the past seven days, gas prices rose 12 cents in Florida, 8 cents in Georgia, and 7 cents in Tennessee. Florida’s average price of $2.42 is the highest since August 2015. Georgia’s average price of $2.28 is the highest since October 2016. Tennessee’s average of $2.14 is the highest since January 2017.
Here is a chart that shows the local increase:
“This is the type of volatility we’ve come to expect this time of year,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA – The Auto Club Group. “The major factors weighing on the market right now are supply and demand. People are beginning to drive more as the weather improves, causing an uptick in demand and a decline in gasoline inventories. Also, many refineries have begun producing and selling summer-blend fuels which are more expensive to produce. AAA forecasts the national average to peak around $2.70 this summer.”
According to AAA, the crude oil market has largely recovered after spending nearly three weeks under $50 a barrel. Friday’s daily settlement of $52.24/b is the highest since March 7. Primary factors contributing to increased crude oil prices include the seasonal uptick of driving demand, continued uncertainty around an extension of OPEC production cuts and increased U.S. production. Oil prices also received a temporary boost on Friday, following the U.S. launch of cruise missiles at a Syrian airfield base. Although Syria has little oil production, their location and alliances with other oil producing countries has led to speculation about how further geopolitical unrest may affect global oil supply. Traders will keep a close eye on political dynamics of the Middle East and any further discussions between OPEC and non-OPEC producers.