How will the Ukraine crisis affect your money?

President Biden said Thursday his administration is using every tool possible – to respond to high gas prices.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – President Biden said Thursday his administration is using every tool possible – to respond to high gas prices. He also warned oil and gas companies to not exploit this moment to raise costs.

The average price of gas in Florida is $3.50. Experts say it could reach $4.00 soon. Some people in Jacksonville have been asking why this conflict is affecting our economy when it’s halfway across the world.

We caught up with Chynnia Chandler at a gas station in Brooklyn. She and her family have been watching what’s happening in Ukraine, but has already seen an impact on her wallet, especially with gas prices.

“That not only affects us at a global rate because it’s not just about ourselves, but even in our own backyard there are already people who are struggling to make ends meet,” Chandler said. “To fill their gas tank for a week to feed their family for a day, this is already putting a lot of stress on the average American.”

Chandler says she’s not hoarding items, but her family is taking some steps to avoid shortages down the line. But is that necessary?

News4JAX talked to Finance Professor, Abdel Missa at Jacksonville University, about why this is even having an impact here.

“Russia is a large commodity producer in the world. It’s one of the biggest,” Missa said. “Let me give you some examples. Obviously oil, natural gas, between Russia and Ukraine is 30% worldwide production.”

And since this all stems around global trading, the stock markets, it works its way back to us.

“I don’t think people should panic here,” Missa said. “The good news is we don’t depend on Russia. I think the concern here in the U.S. now is more about inflation.”

Missa continues, “The biggest thing that we’re dealing with here is commodity prices, energy, gas prices have gone up a lot that’s the case even without Ukraine.”

Joe Krier is a parter at IIWII trading LLC.

“You can expect this volatility for, you know, a little while going forward,” he said.

But he says, don’t panic.

“This is not a time to panic. The worst investment decisions are made in emotional situations,” Krier said. “The world is not going out of business.”

Mike Skordeles, senior U.S. macro strategist for Truist Advisory Services, said U.S. crude oil prices have jumped about 10% over the past 10 days, although they pulled back slightly on Thursday.

“Higher crude oil prices causes higher shipping costs. So that means higher prices for U.S. consumers,” Skordeles said.

He added that U.S. natural gas prices have jumped 20% in the past 10 days.

When it comes to utility prices, JEA recently announced electric bills will be slightly lower in March because the price of natural gas is coming down. With the start of the conflict, that price is soaring back up.

News4JAX asked JEA CEO Jay Stowe what will happen with our bills. He said it will still go down in March but future charges are uncertain. “The natural gas market being volatile as it is could be impacted by the world events, the Ukraine issue being one of them,” Stowe said.

About the Authors:

Jim Piggott is the reporter to count on when it comes to city government and how it will affect the community.

I-TEAM and general assignment reporter