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Gas prices may inch higher during Memorial Day weekend

Fla. gas prices below national average

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TAMPA, Fla. – Florida gas prices declined nearly 2 cents during the past week and remains 5 cents less than the national average. The state average of $2.305 is 10 cents more than this time last year, according to AAA, whose data is collected from credit card swipes and direct feeds from 120,000 gas stations nationwide, in cooperation with OPIS and Wright Express. 

The Florida average declined for the 30th consecutive day on Sunday, for a total of 16 cents during that time. The national average price for a gallon of gasoline increased 2 cents last week. Sunday's average price of $2.36 is 8 cents more than a year ago.

  • The most expensive gas price averages in Florida are in West Palm Beach/Boca Raton ($2.42), Miami ($2.37), and Fort Lauderdale ($2.36)
  • The least expensive gas price averages in Florida are in Orlando ($2.24), Tampa Bay ($2.24), and Jacksonville ($2.26)

"Florida gas prices moved lower last week, but the rate of decline slowed to just fractions of a penny per day," said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA - The Auto Club Group. "After declining for a full month, the pump price plunge seems to be fizzling out, primarily due to rising demand and another week of declining crude inventories."

AAA Forecasts Higher Memorial Day Gas Prices Than Last Year
 

  • AAA forecasts 37.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more for the Memorial Day weekend
  • 34.6 million Americans will take a road trip
  • 1.86 million Floridians will take a road trip
  • Sunday's national average of $2.36 is 4 cents more than the average last year ($2.32), but 38 cents less than the holiday two years ago ($2.74).
  • Florida's average price of $2.31, is 6 cents more than the average last year ($2.25), but 35 cents less than the holiday two years ago ($2.66).
  • Tampa's average price of $2.24 is 10 cents more than the average last year ($2.14), but 33 cents less than the holiday two years ago ($2.57). 

"Despite gas prices being slightly higher than last year, AAA expects the most-traveled Memorial Day in more than a decade," Jenkins said. "Pump prices could face upward pressure by the end of the week, depending on the outcome of an OPEC meeting on Thursday. If prices do surge, it is unlikely they would exceed 10 cents by the holiday. Regardless, most Americans have already locked-in their holiday plans, and any movement at the pump should not be dramatic enough to convince travelers to stay home."

OPEC Meeting Will Steer Prices
OPEC and 11 other countries will meet in Vienna to discuss extending or changing an agreement for cutting crude output, in attempt to balance the oil market and raise prices. The existing agreement, set back in November, called for a reduction of 1.8 million barrels per day; which sent oil prices 20 percent higher, and gas prices up 20 cents in as many days. The IEA released a report last week stating the world was almost balanced between supply and demand during the first three months of the year. However, the higher oil prices attracted increased production from the U.S., Canada, Libya, and Nigeria - who were not a part of the pact - pushing prices back down. OPEC is said to want oil prices at or above $60 per barrel; the highest daily settlements so far this year were $56.34 (Brent) and $54.45 (WTI) in February.

"Last week, oil prices rose when Russia, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait backed a plan to extend the next round of production cuts to nine months instead of six," Jenkins continued. "The futures markets will be very reactive to the rhetoric leading up to the meeting this week, and ultimately the final decision on Thursday, which will steer fuel prices this summer."

                               CURRENT AND PAST PRICE AVERAGES

                                                    Regular Unleaded Gasoline

Sunday

Saturday

Week Ago

Month Ago

One Year Ago

Highest Price on Record

National

$2.355

$2.352

$2.338

$2.423

$2.279

$4.114 (7/17/2008)

Florida

$2.305

$2.306

$2.322

$2.465

$2.212

$4.079 (7/17/2008)

Click here to view current gasoline price averages

 

 

 

 

 

 


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