AAA: Rising Oil Prices Could Push Gas Prices Higher

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Daytona Beach, FL - Gas prices in Florida have been on a steady decline for the past week, but the fun may soon be over as a new rise in oil prices could drive gas prices back up.

As of Monday morning (Jan. 10), Florida’s statewide average price for gas was reported to be at $3.20. Despite that, AAA found that 7 percent of the state’s gas stations had prices below $3 a gallon for regular unleaded.

AAA Spokesperson Mark Jenkins said it’s typical for January gas prices to drop because of lower fuel demand, but that might not be the case if the price of oil goes up.

 "Oil prices shot up last week and that could restore upward pressure in prices at the pump,” said Jenkins.

Throughout last week, the price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) rose 5 percent, reaching a 7-week high of $79.46 on Thursday (Jan. 6). Reports suggest the increase could be due to concerns about how the unrest in Kazakhstan and logistical problems in Libya would hamper global supply. Overall, the price of oil has increased a total of 11 percent in the last three weeks.

As of Monday, Bloomberg.com reported WTI to be about $78.75 per barrel, which is 71 cents lower than the 7-week high experienced last week.

According to AAA, Volusia County’s average price of gas was reported to be around $3.18, which is four cents lower than last week’s reported average. Flagler County, meanwhile, was reported to have an average price of $3.28 per gallon.

Yet again, the West Palm Beach-Boca Raton area was found to have the highest average price for gas in the state with $3.41, while Crestview-Fort Walton Beach had the lowest at $3.08.

The national average is $3.30.

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