As the busy summer driving season approaches, fuel prices are have jumped in the past week.
Fuel-demand is at a record-high, refinery production is on the decline and oil prices are on the rise, and it is this combination of economic conditions that have led to a jump in the national fuel price averages.
According to a report from AAA, the current national fuel price average is $2.11 per gallon. On the week, average gas prices are up seven cents per gallon. Prices have been up 45 of the past 55 days for a total of 41 cents per gallon. However, despite the recent price increases, pump prices are down 33 cents per gallon compared to last year.
AAA has predicted that, due to intermittent supply changes and the increased demand for gasoline, prices may continue to increase in the second quarter of the year in select regional markets. The current relatively lower fuel prices are prompting more drivers to take to the roads, and this increase in driving could put pressure on local gasoline markets and cause prices to move higher if demand outpaces gasoline supply.
Despite recent jumps in price and possible price increases as the summer months approach, consumers are poised to benefit from substantial savings this summer driving season approaches. AAA has predicted that, this summer, most drivers will pay the cheapest summertime prices in 12 years.