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Higher gas prices ‘sign of things to come’

(Source: AP)
(Source: AP)(AP)
Published: Dec. 21, 2020 at 9:13 AM CST
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - A sudden surge in oil prices is driving up gasoline prices.

According to its survey of 1,826, GasBuddy.com reports the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded in Arkansas rose 4.2 cents in the last week to $1.93.

That is 13.1 cents more than a month ago, but still 30.4 cents less than a year ago.

The national average rose 4.8 cents in the last week to $2.21/gallon.

Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, explained the sudden spike to an increase in the price of oil.

The price for a barrel of crude jumped to nearly $50 last week, he said. That’s the highest it’s been since March when prices collapsed due to COVID-19.

“While last week’s gas price surge isn’t likely to repeat this week, it could be a sign of things to come in the year ahead,” De Haan said. “A weakening U.S. dollar and vaccine optimism continued to push oil higher last week, along with stock markets.”

He added that some have erroneously blamed the coming change at the White House for driving up prices.

“I can assure motorists that what we’re seeing has nothing to do with such a change and everything to do with market optimism that demand will rise, and the weaker dollar which makes oil cheaper to anyone holding non-dollar currencies, putting upward pressure on demand,” he said.

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