After months of declining prices at the pump, motorists have seen the average price of gas jump nearly a dime in the past week, according to AAA.
Nationally, as of Monday, March 18, the average price per gallon was up to $2.54, an increase of seven cents in a week and 23 more cents than last month. AAA officials noted that the price is the exact same as it was on the same date last year.
According to AAA, for the first time since the end of November last year, the national gas price average the past four days was identical or a penny more expensive year-over-year. While the national gas price average is the same price, only 20 states can say the same. Across the country, the yearly difference ranges from as much as 25-cents cheaper to 10-cents more expensive.
“Since early February, gasoline demand has been steadily increasing while stocks have been gradually decreasing, causing more expensive pump prices across the country,” AAA spokesperson Jeanette Casselano said. “The good news is most motorists are not paying more than they were a year ago to fill up.”
New Yorkers are paying an average of $2.66 per gallon, up seven cents from a week ago and 20 cents up from a month ago. Westchester motorists are paying the second-highest average per gallon in the state ($2.84), followed by Rockland ($2.76); Putnam ($2.75); Putnam ($2.65) and Orange ($2.62).
In Connecticut, motorists are paying an average of $2.62 per gallon, led by Fairfield County at $2.70 per gallon.
AAA spokesperson Fran Mayko added that there are several reasons for price increases at the pump, including fluctuating crude oil prices, increased demand and global inventory tightening. Oil stocks are volatile because of the news OPEC has postponed next month’s meeting to discuss its crude reduction pact with other global producers.
“The cartel says it needs more time to decide if it should extend the agreement beyond late June, reports say. Market observers, however, believe the United State’s own crude production will meet global demand as the worldwide supply tightens.”
"All these factors are causing pump prices to rise across the country,” she said. “For drivers, that can be bad news, but the good news is most motorists aren’t paying more than they were a year ago to fill up.”
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