The price of gasoline on Monday morning was higher by seven cents a gallon compared with last week’s national average pump price for regular. Compared with the same day last year, Monday’s national average price of $2.40 is about 35 cents a gallon higher.
U.S. refineries are back near normal production levels of more costly summer-grade gasoline. Combined with still-rising crude oil prices, U.S. drivers are paying more at the pump and probably will be for several weeks.
GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan said:
While the continued increases are completely seasonal in nature, it’s not any easier for motorists to digest. Oil now stands $5 per barrel higher than just a few weeks ago and is the main culprit for rising gasoline prices. Many areas are also nearing completion of the transition to summer gasoline and with it comes a complex list of various summer blends of gasoline that cause us to pay more each and every spring. In addition, with the situation in Syria, there is a rising risk of more heat between some of the world’s largest oil producers, causing concern in oil markets which could be a slight contribution to higher prices
Gas prices rose in 48 states over the past week. The five states taking the largest increases were Kentucky (up 15 cents a gallon), Florida (12 cents), Michigan (12 cents), Indiana (11 cents) and Missouri (10 cents).
The two states where prices were lower were Utah and Idaho, where refinery maintenance is now finished and the refineries are back online.
No state is showing an average of below $2.00 a gallon Monday morning. The five states with the lowest prices are South Carolina ($2.104 a gallon), Oklahoma ($2.118), Alabama ($2.137), Mississippi ($2.138) and Tennessee ($2.138). States posting the highest prices are Hawaii ($3.005 a gallon), California ($2.991), Washington ($2.889), Alaska ($2.813) and Oregon $2.743).
The most common price across the country is $2.399, with the highest 5% of stations charging an average of $3.151 and the lowest 5% of stations charging $2.055. Less than 1% of U.S. gas stations are charging less than $2.00 a gallon as of Monday morning.
West Texas Intermediate crude oil for May delivery traded up about 1.2% Monday morning to $52.87 a barrel, well above last Monday’s closing price of $50.24.