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OIL AND GAS
AAA: Gas prices rising, but pain less severe
by Daniel J. Graeber
Washington (UPI) Feb 3, 2015


disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

While it's not uncommon for retail gasoline prices in the United States to spike 30 cents in February, motor club AAA said prices will remain at historic lows.

AAA reports a national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline for Tuesday at $2.07, about 4 cents higher than last week. The price of gasoline has increased for eight consecutive days, but follows a steady decline that began at the end of September.

The low price of oil, about 50 percent below June levels, is reflected at the gas pump and roughly half of all retail filling centers in the country are selling gas below the $2 mark. With refineries undergoing seasonal maintenance as they prepare to make a summer blend of gasoline that's more expensive to produce, consumers will start to notice the change.

"Many drivers are noticing an uptick in gas prices for the first time in months," AAA spokesman Avery Ash said. "It is typical to see gas prices increase this time of year due to refinery issues, yet hopefully the consumer impact will be less problematic given how low prices are today."

AAA said it's not uncommon for retail gasoline prices to increase more than 30 cents per gallon in February. The motor club, however, said the national average price should stay below the $3 mark for the year.

"It is a good bet that most drivers will pay more for gasoline in March than today," Ash said. "Yet even if gas prices increase as expected, drivers should continue paying at least a dollar less on gasoline than what they spent in recent years during the spring."

Tuesday's average price is about 7 percent less than one month ago and almost 40 percent less than this date in 2014.


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